More juveniles charged in connection with Sweet Corn Festival brawls

Teens face rioting charges

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CEDAR RAPIDS — More teens have been charged in connection with the fights that shut down the St. Jude Sweet Corn Festival Saturday night.

Cedar Rapids public safety spokesman Greg Buelow said police have cited two 16-year-old boys and a 14-year-old girl with rioting.

Including these latest charges, nine teens have now been cited in connection with the fights, and Buelow added that more charges are likely.

“The police department has taken the disturbances that broke out at the Sweet Corn Festival very seriously,” Buelow said. “Police continue to investigate and look to hold those individuals who disrupted the event accountable for their actions. The majority of those that attended the Sweet Corn Festival were law-abiding citizens. Police officers appreciated the assistance of many responsible attendees who helped prevent additional disturbances or further escalation of fights that did occur.”

Cedar Rapids police responded to the Sweet Corn Festival Saturday night after a fight broke out that led to a 15-year-old boy being charged with disorderly conduct and interference with official acts. A larger fight involving about 70 juveniles followed that altercation.

Police said during the larger brawl, a Cedar Rapids Police Officer was jumped and assaulted by a 16-year-old boy while the officer was taking another subject into custody. The officer was punched in the face and kicked while on the ground, suffering minor injuries, Buelow said. The 16-year-old was arrested on one count of assault on a police officer.

Three other boys — ages 12, 15 and 16 — and a 14-year-old girl were arrested on charges of disorderly conduct charges for their roles in the scrum.

The melee led to police asking festival organizers to shut down the event. It ended for the evening at 9:45 p.m. Organizers said Sunday’s even went smoothly.

Buelow said fights continued after the festival was closed for the evening. The Linn County Sheriff’s Office, Marion and Hiawatha police departments and Iowa State Patrol also responded.

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