Police were on the scene of a fight that erupted in front of the JCPenney store at Westfarms early in the evening of Dec. 26. [Updated, De. 27]
By Ronni Newton
Police responded to a fight early Thursday evening at Westfarms, which spans the West Hartford and Farmington town lines, and several juveniles were arrested, West Hartford Police said.
Lt. Daniel Moffo said West Hartford Police had earlier been informed of a large presence of juveniles at Westfarms. More than a dozen private duty officers from both Farmington and West Hartford were already on duty assisting Westfarms security, police said.
As the size of the crowd of juveniles grew, several additional units were assigned by West Hartford Police as a precaution, Assistant Chief Dan Coppinger said Friday.
According to Moffo, officers were already on scene when the fight erupted at 6:13 p.m., and quickly “quelled the disturbances and cleared the area at the request of Westfarms Mall Security.”
Several juveniles were arrested by West Hartford and Farmington police as a result of the incident, and were charged with interfering with an officer and disorderly conduct. West Hartford Police said Thursday night that one of the juveniles they arrested was issued a juvenile summons and released to the custody of a parent.
West Hartford Police, Farmington Police, and officers from other agencies remained at the scene “to ensure the safety and security” of patrons, but Westfarms remained open.
“As a result of the multi-jurisdictional security contingent in place at the time and the immediate actions of officers, the mall was able to continue normal operations,” Coppinger said in a news release Friday. Officers from both West Hartford and Farmington will maintain an increased presence and continue to work with Westfarms security staff, he added.
Westfarms spokesperson Amanda Sirica released the following statement late Thursday: “The safety and security of our customers and employees is our first priority. This unacceptable conduct undermines our family friendly standards. We thank the police and security that acted swiftly to restore normal operating conditions. We continue to actively assist the Farmington and West Hartford police investigation into this matter.”
WTNH reported that a fight also broke out at the Connecticut Post Mall in Milford on Thursday. Milford Police indicated that the mall was cleared out and closed, and people were required to leave.
Update on the activity at the Milford Mall. The Mall is closed for the evening Due to several fights in the mall. Milford Police requested mutual aid from CSP, Stratford PD & W Haven PD. Additional buses were summoned to assist with clearing out the mall grounds.
— Milford CT PD (@MilfordCT_PD) December 27, 2019
In 2018, a huge brawl broke out at the Shoppes at Buckland Hills. Curfews have been instituted for the holiday season at both Buckland Hills and the Brass Mill Center in Waterbury, the Hartford Courant reported.
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