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Controversial charges against Murfreesboro children to be dropped


MURFREESBORO, Tenn. (WMOT)  --  District Attorney Jennings Jones says controversial charges will be dropped against 10 children arrested by Murfreesboro Police.

The Daily News Journal quotes Jones saying yesterday that it’s the “state’s intention to drop the assault charges.” The children were arrested using an obscure state law on April 15 for failing to intervene in stop a fight between two boys.

Some of the ten children, who ranged in age from 9 to 12 years, were arrested at Hobgood Elementary during the school day. One was transported to Juvenile Hall in handcuffs.

Parents and community leaders were outraged by the arrests and news of the incident made national headlines.

Pastor James McCarroll of First Baptist Church in Murfreesboro has been deeply involved in conversations between the parents of the children and city officials. He says the parents seemed pleased with yesterday’s announcement.

“The number one concern with the parents was getting their children’s records cleared. I think with that being the case…of course that’s been our primary objective. So hearing this announcement and knowing this is going to happen…from what I gather from my conversations with them they’re pretty satisfied with it.”

McCarroll says one lingering concern of the parents is that the children not be further traumatized by being forced to appear in court when the charges are formally dismissed.

The pastor gives Murfreesboro Chief of Police Karl Durr high marks for the way he interacted with the community following the controversial arrests.