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Body camera recordings show Mount Healthy party dissolve into melee

Posted at 5:00 PM, Apr 08, 2019
and last updated 2019-04-11 07:27:40-04

MOUNT HEALTHY, Ohio — A Saturday night Sweet 16 party on Hilltop Plaza escalated into a public battle royale that led to officer injuries and eight arrests for aggravated rioting.

"Every time one fight was broke up, another would start," one police report said.

The incident began at Playtime USA on Hamilton Avenue and moved into nearby parking lots throughout the strip mall, where multiple fights broke out.

Body camera recordings show teens slammed to the ground, combatants shouting epithets at one another and parents attempting to pull their children out of the melee.

Mount Healthy police said they arrested and charged seven juveniles with aggravated rioting. One adult, Jasmin Watkins, was charged with aggravated rioting and obstructing official business.

"Everybody back off," one officer shouts as another arrests Watkins. "I will tase all of you."

At least ten other agencies were called in to assist Mount Healthy police during the incident. According to Mount Healthy police, two North College Hill officers were injured during the incident, with one being hit in the face, though they didn't specify severity of the injuries.

An incident report obtained from Springfield Township states that when officers arrived on scene, they observed "a couple hundred people in the parking lot" with "fights breaking out everywhere." The report also describes "several subjects lying on the ground while others repeatedly kicked them" and "shots fired nearby."

"My daughter just called me crying and screaming saying there is a real big fight in there, everyone is crying and fighting," said the primary 911 call into dispatch.

Dispatch responded: "Yeah, we've got a dozen officers on scene right now, ma'am."

The incident report from Springfield Township police also stated that officers used pepperball guns and K-9 units for crowd control.

"The crowd began to turn on the officers," the report reads. "People were striking the officers while the fight being disbursed. Prior to deploying my mace, I gave several warnings to stop fighting or mace will be used. No one complied. At this time, I deployed my mace into the air above the subjects fighting in attempt to break up the fight and stop subjects from striking the officers."

Eventually, police were able to break up the fights, but the report states it took officers from Mount Healthy, North College Hill, Springfield Township, Colerain Township, Greenhills, Hamilton County Sheriff's Department, Hamilton County Park Rangers, Lockland, Evendale, Cincinnati and Forest Park Departments to gain control of the situation.

Mount Healthy police also said a co-owner of Playtime USA, Daniel Oliver, is being charged with operating a teen club without a permit.