In Montgomery, Alabama, five individuals charged with a riverfront brawl that gained national attention because white boaters clashing with Black riverboat crew members have pleaded not guilty to charges of assault and disorderly conduct. The incident has sparked much controversy and debate, and the legal proceedings will be closely watched by many.
According to reports, four Caucasian boaters were caught on camera hitting or pushing a Black riverboat captain in Montgomery. They have recently pleaded not guilty to the misdemeanour assault charges filed against them. On the other hand, a Black man, who was also filmed hitting people with a folding chair in the ensuing chaos, pleaded not guilty to misdemeanour disorderly conduct charges.
According to the records from the Montgomery Municipal Court, the not guilty pleas were submitted in the previous week.
The brawl videos became incredibly popular on social media and quickly spread like wildfire. Soon after, people started creating memes, jokes, parodies, and reenactments based on the incident. It even inspired some to create T-shirts.
According to WSFA, Richard White, who is representing one of the white boaters involved in the Montgomery riverfront brawl, is determined to ensure that his client receives fair treatment despite the widespread media coverage of the incident.
Last month, Montgomery Police Chief Darryl Albert stated in a press conference that the altercation ensued when the owner of a pontoon boat refused to vacate a docking area reserved for the Harriott II riverboat owned by the city. To resolve the situation, the co-captain of the riverboat used a smaller vessel to approach the shore and move the pontoon boat so that the Harriott II could dock and allow its approximately 200 passengers to disembark.
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