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Witness reacts to violent attack at Kroger

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. - Three people, two of them teens, are recovering at home after being brutally attacked by a mob of teenagers in a busy shopping plaza at Poplar and Highland.

The vicious parking lot brawl was caught on cell phone video.

The disturbing video shows a high school kid lying still on the ground while others repeatedly kicked and stomped on his head. The teen attacked is an employee of Kroger.

“They followed hitting him with a pumpkin. He was already unconscious, so all you could see was blood and pumpkins,” said a witness who did not want to be identified. He is a friend of the victims.

The witness says the mob of young teens viciously ran through the Poplar Plaza parking lot assaulting complete strangers.

It was maybe about 100 to 125 kids. It was a lot of kids,” said the witness.

“Is that an exaggeration?” asked WREG’s Elise Preston.

“No, it`s not an exaggeration,” replied the witness.

There were so many kids, the security guards couldn't control the violent crowd.

“They were playing a game called ‘point them out, knock them out.’ Where they would point someone out and attempt to knock them out or fight them. There was no real reason behind it.

The shaky witness video is gaining shares on social media by the minute with angry comments questioning if this is a racially charged hate crime.

In this clip you see several black teenagers beating one white teen.

But the witness says this clip is just a tiny snapshot of what happened in the entire parking lot. He states, blacks, whites, girls and boys were all part of the vicious pack.

“Were all of the victims white?” asked WREG’s Elise Preston.

“No, they were black and white. Will is white, Brian is black. and then my other friend, Brandon, he`s black as well,” replied the witness.

News Channel 3 slowed down the video and noticed the security guard is dragging a black teen away from the crowd.

The witness identified that teen as another Kroger employee knocked unconscious after he tried to stop the mob from attacking customers.

“It’s kind of traumatizing because it didn't seem real. It didn't seem like any of that would happen,” said the witness.

The teen watched the angry mob beat his friends until they couldn't move. But he says what's even more terrifying, more traumatizing is that this is second the weekend he`s witnessed a mob of violent kids attack random people in the shopping plaza parking lot.

He`s not sure it won`t happen again.

“Why, honestly why? Why did that happen? There was no real reason behind it. What was the point of that game? You are hurting somebody you don`t even know,” said the witness.

The victims have been released from the hospital.

Police need help identifying the attackers. If you have any information, you are asked to call crime stoppers at 528-CASH.

Memphis Police Director Toney Armstrong spoke out about the incident saying; it’s extremely troubling to see how many young people were involved, just days after the city’s youth violence prevention forum.

In a statement, he went on to say: “A lot of our citizens are working to provide safe and productive alternatives for our youth.

For those that choose not to take advantage of these opportunities, we will work tirelessly to identify, locate and you accountable.

Last night’s events clearly demonstrate lack of parental controls and if warranted, these parents will be held accountable.

The public spokesperson for Kroger, Joe Bell, tells WREG “Our hearts go out to the two boys that were attacked. They were taken to the hospital and released to their parents. The boys are doing just fine."


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