EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

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January 23, 2013

Police: Group with knife, baseball bat chase man downtown

Investigators not sure what caused attack leading to 9 arrests

HAVERHILL — Police said it was a wild scene: A man with a knife and another wielding a baseball bat were among a group of people who chased someone through a neighborhood just north of downtown Sunday night.

Officers were dispatched to White and Nichols streets about 9:30 p.m. Sunday, after a report that a group of teenagers and young men was fighting in the street and that one of them had a knife and another had a bat. Police Deputy Chief Donald Thompson said officers checked the area but did not find anyone.

As officers were on White and Nichols streets, the police station began receiving calls that the group was now several blocks closer to downtown, at the intersection of Emerson Street and Bailey Boulevard near the Boys & Girls Club, Callers told police that members of the group were running through the streets and appeared to be chasing someone.

Police Deputy Chief Donald Thompson said eight officers went to the scene, where they encountered the group of eight teenagers and young men.

“They were still running through the street when officers arrived and ordered them all to the ground,” Thompson said.

A witness told police he saw one male walking down the street when suddenly the group appeared and began chasing him, Thompson said. The witness said the group included one person who had a knife and another with a baseball bat.

“Usually in a case like this, the information will be passed on to the area officers and juvenile officers, who sometimes will add additional information as to what caused things,” Thompson said. “At this point it’s unknown as to what caused the altercation and detectives will be looking into it.”

Police charged Leander Medina Salome, 24, 16 Ashland St., with assault with a dangerous weapon, a knife; Hipolito Gonzalez, 18, 36 Nichols St., with assault with a dangerous weapon, a baseball bat, and disorderly conduct; and Jose Espiritu, 19, 40 Nichols St., Julio Hernandez, 28, 11 North St., and Jeremy Ocasio, 20, 11 North St., with disorderly conduct. Police also charged a 13-year-old boy and two 15-year-old boys with disorderly conduct.

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