Deputies break up gang fight in church parking lot

JACKSON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - A huge, gang-related fight outside a Jackson County church sent two people to the hospital, and led to 12 arrests Wednesday night. When deputies arrived at the Lemoyne Boulevard Baptist Church parking lot, they found a group of mostly 18 and 19-year-olds wielding poles, pipes and bricks.

Two of the people that participated in the fight were taken by ambulance to Ocean Springs Hospital for injuries sustained in the fight.

Investigators said several of those involved in the fight have been identified and/or claimed to be Black Gangster Disciples.

WLOX News spoke with several church members who said the fight took place hours after the congregation's Wednesday night fellowship, and that those involved are not church members. One church member, who did not want to be identified, said he is praying for the young men, and hopes God will intervene in their lives.

The following people were arrested, and charged with Disorderly Conduct, Resisting Arrest and Disturbing the Peace:

  • Kristopher Drew Watford, 18, of Ocean Springs
  • Anthony Paul Rodriguez, 18, of Ocean Springs
  • Rosco Hunter Watts, 18, of Ocean Springs
  • Thadius Marcelis Whittle, 18, of Vancleave
  • Nicholas Rickelle Franklin, 19, of Vancleave
  • Travis Jordon Taylor, 18, of Vancleave
  • Larry Ratliff III, 18, of Biloxi
  • Rodney Elbert Taylor, 20, of Vancleave
  • Phillip Lee Young, 18, of Ocean Springs

A juvenile was also arrested for the same charges and transported to the Jackson County Youth Court. Two other juveniles were released to their parents/guardians.

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