News

3 men labelled as ‘cowards’ arrested for brutal assault on Reid Watts at ‘Rock the South’ that left him unconscious

todayJuly 26, 2023 6

Background
share close


Three Alabama men in their early 20s have been arrested for the brutal assault on a teenager at the “Rock the South” music festival last weekend that left him unconscious and with a broken nose.

William Vinson Jr, and Chance Starling, both 20, and 21-year-old Zachary Taylor, have been charged with second-degree assault, a felony, for the attack on 18-year-old Reid Watts, the Cullman Police Department announced Wednesday.

Watts’ mother, Kaci Howard, welcomed the news of the arrests, labeling her son’s accused attackers “cowards.”

“Imagine being as big as these cowards and attacking a kid who weighs 124 lbs from behind, attacking anyone from behind for that matter,” Howard wrote on Facebook.

Warrants for the suspects’ arrests were issued Tuesday afternoon, and the trio were taken into custody in Madison and Limestone counties by 5:30 p.m., Cullman Police Chief David Nassetta said during a press conference.

Nassetta added that social media tips from members of the public were a “big, big factor” in helping investigators identify the alleged culprits.


William Vinson Jr, 20, Chance Starling, 20, and Zachary Taylor, 20, have been arrested in the brutal beating of Reid Watts, 18, at the “Rock the South” concert in Alabama that was caught on video.
Facebook / Kaci Howard

“The victim did not know them, and the witnesses we had didn’t know them, so it was really an important part of the puzzle for people to be able to look at the video and say, ‘Yeah, I know those guys,’” said the chief.

When asked about a possible motive for the savage beating, Nassetta declined to go into details but said that it was “absolutely meaningless.”

“Our investigation showed that it was a pretty frivolous, meaningless thing,” he said.

“Nothing can really justify something like that, but in this particular incident it was something that normally should not rise to this level of violence.”


Reid Watts
The Cullman Police Department announced Wednesday the three men have been charged with second-degree assault, a felony, for the attack on Reid Watts.
Facebook / Kaci Howard

“I think it kind of speaks a little bit to the character of the individuals that we arrested,” he added.

Vinson, Starling and Taylor all bonded out as of Wednesday morning.

Their cases will be presented to the Cullman County Grand Jury at a later date, Cullman District Attorney Champ Crocker said.

If convicted, the men could be looking at up to 10 years in prison.


Chance Starling
Watts’ mother, Kaci Howard, welcomed the news of the arrests, labeling her son’s accused attackers “cowards.” Warrants for the suspects’ arrests were issued Tuesday afternoon, and the trio were taken into custody in Madison and Limestone counties by 5:30 p.m., Cullman Police Chief David Nassetta said during a press conference.
Cullman Police Department

Watts, who has been discharged from the hospital to continue his recovery at home, has not publicly commented on the arrests as of Wednesday afternoon.

The teen previously told the station WBMA that he was attending the popular concert with a group of friends Saturday when he was accused by someone in the crowd of spilling a drink on them.

Watts said he tried to explain to his accuser that he was innocent because he did not have a drink in his hand — and at first, it seemed like their disagreement was quashed and sealed with a handshake.

“Then a few minutes later, I was walking back and got hit in the back of the head, then I hit the ground and tried to cover my face, then I got knocked out and that was really all I remember,” Watts said, saying that his attackers looked like “30-to 40-year-old men.”


William Vinson Jr,
Warrants for the suspects’ arrests were issued Tuesday afternoon, and the trio were taken into custody in Madison and Limestone counties by 5:30 p.m., Cullman Police Chief David
Cullman Police Department

Watts’ girlfriend, Katie Hudgins, witnessed the ruthless beating and she said it left her traumatized.

“It was horrible, I’m traumatized, I felt so helpless because I couldn’t get in there and get to him and I had to sit there and watch him get beat up while he’s unconscious, it’s horrible,” Hudgins said.

Watts was rushed to a hospital to be treated for multiple injuries, including a fractured nose, a concussion, and “knots the size of softballs on the back of his head,” according to his mom, who shared a photo of her son with swollen eyes and wearing a neck brace.

After being released from the hospital, Watts said he has been healing.


Zachary Taylor
Nassetta added that social media tips from members of the public were a “big, big factor” in helping investigators identify the alleged culprits.
Cullman Police Department

“I’m all right, and it could’ve been a lot worse,” the teen said.

Following the incident, the “Rock the South” festival offered a $10,000 reward plus lifetime tickets to the event for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the people responsible for the assault.

“Rock the South” co-owner and producer Nathan Ball spoke at Wednesday’s press conference and thanked police, festival goers and social media users who helped identify the suspects leading to their arrests.

“Like you, we were absolutely disgusted and appalled at the cowardly actions of a few individuals at our festival last weekend,” said Ball.

“I want to emphasize wholeheartedly that this behavior is neither widespread nor common at any of our events.”



Source link

Written by: Soft FM Radio Staff

Rate it

Electro Music Newsletter

Don't miss a beat

Sign up for the latest electronic news and special deals

EMAIL ADDRESS*

    By signing up, you understand and agree that your data will be collected and used subject to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

    0%