Minn. basketball players accused of assault spree

Published 10:01 am Tuesday, August 4, 2015

WICHITA, Kan. — Seven youth basketball players visiting Wichita for a weekend tournament were arrested on numerous charges Sunday night after police said they went on an assault spree around the city.

The boys, ranging in age from 12 to 18 years old, were in town from Minneapolis for the Mid America Youth Basketball tournament and staying at an area hotel, police said.

“There’s coaches, but apparently there wasn’t any supervision being done to watch these young men,” Wichita Police spokesman Lt. James Espinoza said.

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Officers responded around 11 p.m. Sunday to a home where a 48-year-old man reported a group of teens approached him as he stood on his front porch, Espinoza said. The boys yelled at him and threw rocks, bottles, bricks and concrete chunks, Espinoza said, causing injuries to the man’s abdomen, arms and legs.

A 29-year-old man who also was at the house tried to run away but was chased down and beaten by the group, he said.

Later, a 32-year-old man riding his bicycle in downtown Wichita was knocked off his bike and punched, kicked and hit with rocks by a group of 10 to 12 boys, Espinoza said.

Police also are investigating whether several homeless people also were assaulted by the group throughout the night. Espinoza said victims were still coming forward.

A 12-year-old boy was arrested on suspicion of battery, aggravated assault and resisting arrest. Two 14-year-olds, two 15-year-olds and an 18-year-old were arrested on suspicion of battery, while another 15-year-old was arrested on suspicion of battery and destruction to property.