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Violent teen battle in Westover ends with accidents, arrest

Not less than one teen is hospitalized, and others had been handled for accidents after what’s being described as a “melee” between a gaggle of youngsters on Millan Road in Westover at round 1:30 a.m. Thursday.

An 18-year-old feminine is in custody in relation to the battle.

Westover Police Chief Joe Adams stated the handle the place the battle occurred – 29 Millan St. – is well-known to his officers who’ve been known as to the situation for disturbances a number of instances previously.

When officers Ben Scott and Zachary Fecsko arrived on the scene, they noticed a feminine recognized as Alyssa D. Bess, 18, of Buckhannon, engaged in an argument with others there. Based on the felony grievance, Bess was heard saying that “she would beat somebody’s a** once more.”

The officers reported talking with three victims who had been all juveniles, one age 14 and two age 16.

One of many 16-year-old victims informed the officers that in the course of the altercation with them and the opposite two juveniles, Bess allegedly struck them within the head with a steel object. Based on the grievance, police later decided that steel object to be brass knuckles.

Officer Scott reported the juvenile who was struck with the hand-held weapon was transported to the hospital, the place they had been identified with a concussion, a number of contusions and dental trauma.

Whereas on scene, police say Bess informed them a number of instances that she was drunk.

Bess was positioned beneath arrest and transported to the Monongalia County Sheriff’s Workplace for processing. Whereas on the county facility, court docket paperwork point out Bess grew to become combative with transport officers and struck one in every of them. She was allegedly not in a position to be fingerprinted as a result of her combative nature.

The reason for the battle continues to be beneath investigation, nevertheless Adams stated they at present speculate the altercation started over what he described as “social media beefing.” The slang time period “beefing” usually means arguing or preventing.

Arguments that start on-line, notably with younger individuals, are taken to the streets multiple may suppose, leading to bodily fights, shootings and, in some instances, loss of life.

A 2021 research titled, “How social media turns on-line arguments between teenagers into real-world violence,” initially printed in “The Dialog” by researchers on the College of Connecticut, checked out how social media communication can set off and speed up offline, real-life violence.

The research interviewed younger individuals who claimed that there have been 4 options of social media specifically that appeared to escalate conflicts that start on-line – feedback, livestreaming, image/video sharing and tagging.

The research discovered via the interviews that on-line arguments that will in any other case fizzle down and die out with time, will be amplified or “overrated” by uninvolved commenters who instigate continued preventing between the unique events.

Livestreaming simply provides to the issue by immediately attracting massive audiences to observe the conflicts unfold in real-time.

As a result of younger individuals are very conscious of the variety of feedback a put up will get, or how many individuals are viewing a livestream, peer stress could make it tough to decide out of a battle as soon as it begins.

The background and circumstances that led to the Millan Road brawl are nonetheless being investigated.

Bess is at present being charged with malicious assault, nevertheless Adams stated he expects extra costs to comply with because the investigation continues.

Bess was arraigned in Monongalia County Justice of the Peace Courtroom on Thursday. As of Thursday afternoon, she was being held on $50,000 bond at North Central Regional Jail.

The situation of the victims is unknown right now.