A confrontation at a Gulf Coast convenience store has led to a simple assault charge against 3 Doors Down bassist Todd Harrell and a weapons charge being filed against a Moss Point man, authorities said.
Police Lt. Chuck Coleman said warrants were signed Monday naming Harrell and Ronnie Boulware. Harrell reported to authorities, posted a $325 bond and was released. Coleman said papers were to be served on Boulware, whose bond on the weapons charge was set at $1,000.
Janice Boulware, independent contractor for The Mississippi Press, said she and her husband, Ronnie, arrived at the Cheep-O Deep-O around 9:50 a.m. Friday and spotted Harrell, 32, allegedly removing three newspapers from a vending machine outside the business.
A caller reported the confrontation to the police and said one of the individuals had a handgun.
Following the initial investigation, Coleman said a complaint was filed charging Ronnie Boulware with exhibiting a weapon.
Coleman said Harrell told officers he had just bought two Mississippi Press newspapers and one Sun Herald newspaper when the Boulwares approached him and accused him of theft, which allegedly led to an argument between all three.
Harrell's attorney, Paul Benton, said Harrell had entered the store to get change and "legally bought'' the papers the Boulwares allege were stolen.
Store owner Bill Hyatt said a store surveillance tape was turned over to police. Hyatt said it showed Harrell getting change before the incident.
Coleman said after following Harrell to his vehicle, Ronnie Boulware claimed Harrell got out struck and Boulware. The officer said Boulware then removed a handgun from his vehicle and allegedly threatened Harrell.
The Boulwares allege that after confronting Harrell, he began using profanity and then kicked Ronnie Boulware, 53, in the groin and hit him three times in the face. Boulware was treated at Singing River Hospital for cuts, his wife said.
Harrell told police the altercation began when Ronnie Boulware positioned himself to keep Harrell from leaving in his truck and became loud and profane.
"According to Harrell, he was trying to close the vehicle door and Boulware wouldn't get out of the way so he could leave,'' Coleman said. "From that point on is where the actual physical confrontation occurred.''
The members of 3 Doors Down are back home in Escatawpa on the Mississippi Gulf Coast after a tour to promote their second album, "Away From The Sun.''