Yarys Rojas, Israel Pizarro, Will Barbosa, Carlos Santos/Southbridge Police
Just before 8 PM on Saturday, June 19th, Southbridge Police were called to the intersection of Union and Oliver Streets to investigate the report of loud music and vehicles racing in the road.
Officers were able to clear the scene but were called back twice more by 8:30 PM for complaints of a similar nature.
Closing in on 9 PM, Southbridge Police had to return for a fourth time, where a crowd of more than 50 people had gathered, drinking alcohol and setting off fireworks, according to police.
At this time, other nearby police departments were called in as backup to assist. As the group began to be more combative, officers attempted to de-escalate the disturbance when the crowd became aggressive towards police.
In a press release from Chief Shane Woodson, he said, “Most of the participants refused to comply and continued their assaultive behavior towards officers and they began to encourage violence directed at our officers.”
People in the crowd were throwing rocks at officers and at police vehicles. At least one cruiser was damaged.
As a result of this violent riot, 4 people were arrested and charged with disturbing the peace, disorderly conduct, and interfering with police.
27-year-old Yarys Rojas, 24-year-old Israel Pizarro, 33-year-old Will Barbosa, and 22-year-old Carlos Santos, all of Southbridge, were held at police headquarters pending their release on bail and/or their arraignment in Dudley District Court on today.
Police also say a 47-year-old female was also charged with assault and battery on a police officer and will be summoned to court at a later date. Her name and mugshot were not shared by police.