A weekend fight at the Augusta Mall hits the internet, social media and YouTube, raising questions about security.
The brawl that happened outside of Forever 21 around 9 p.m. Saturday night. There are no word on the extent of the injuries during the fight. We spoke with a store manager near where the fight happened who says, a patron broke up the brawl. She added that this kind of thing isn’t rare.
For 39 seconds…this brutal brawl gets worse with each blow. Through this YouTube video, it appears that a group of girls attacked another group unexpectedly inside the Augusta Mall…even dragging one of the victims by the hair.
We showed the video to parents Sandra and Darrel Williams…their first response,
“Where was security?”
We tried to ask that question to the management at Augusta Mall. After making several calls, we were finally pointed to the interim General Manager who works out of Columbia, South Carolina.
We sent him an email with several questions about the Augusta Mall’s security policy…his response? That safety is their top priority, but that he can’t discuss the specifics of their public safety program because that would compromise their efforts.
Leaving these parents with more questions, “It look like the fight went on for a while, security should have been there to break that up.”
Charles Evans is an attorney and former Solicitor General for Richmond County.
He says these types of recorded fights are increasing as a way to get fame, “It is so easy with the internet and it didn’t cost anything and their faces and acts are now all over the world.”
The video had a couple hundred hits on YouTube the day after the fight, 2 days after the fight, 75-hundred hits. He says what kids and sometimes even adults don’t understand…is that this video is now evidence.
Evidence that could lead to criminal charges and possible lawsuits, “Certainly, everyone will have their day in court.”
With this latest fight at the Augusta Mall, these parents don’t know if they’ll be letting their teen head back there any time soon.
“I expect security to be there and I expect them to be protected,” said Sandra.
The Richmond County Sheriff’s Office responded to this fight, but they say by the time they got there, the crowd had dispersed and no one wanted to file an incident report. Back in 2011, we told you about a fight at the Augusta Mall—all 6 teenage girls were charged.
Here is a list of the questions we sent to Interim General Manager Tom Dornfeld:
1) What is the security procedure when a fight like this happens? Was it followed this weekend?
2) How many security officers/paid Richmond County Deputies are on duty at any given time at the mall?
3) There have been several fights at the Augusta mall in recent years, one of them making national sites, here’s our local report on it last year: http://www2.wjbf.com/news/2011/jun/27/teen-girls-face-charges-after-augusta-mall-fight-ar-2034870/ Has the Augusta Mall taken extra security precautions in recent months to protect patrons?
4) What would you say to someone who won’t go to the Augusta Mall at night because of these security concerns?”
Here is his response:
Hello Jillian. Following is my response to your questions.
The safety and security of our shoppers are always our top priority. We have a customized public safety program that entails multiple measures, including a great relationship with the Richmond County Sheriff’s Department and a trained security team. We cannot discuss the specifics of our public safety program because by doing so would compromise our efforts.