Two more arrests in viral video street brawl

A day after an 18-year old was arrested in connection with a video of a brawl that went viral over the weekend.

Zakeria Johnson, 24 and Ronetta Wright, 21, are both accused of punching someone with closed fists.

Over the weekend, 18-year-old Jontaianna Pitts was arrested, accused of hitting two people several times in the head with a baseball bat while they were on the ground.

The fight started at a shopping plaza on Moncrief Road and about 90 minutes later, police say another fight involving the same people took place at Simonds-Johnson Park nearby.

Several people filmed it, even streamed it on Facebook Live.

Wright repeatedly hit one victim who is pregnant and kicker her while she was on the ground, including kicking the victim in the head multiple times, according to police.

Police said that during the brawl, Wright also hit a car with a baseball bat, smashing out the driver’s side rear window as she attempted to pull the pregnant victim out of the car.

Members of Pitts’ family said she was working at a hair store when women showed up to fight her. then the chaos began, and it was caught on camera.

Police say Jontaianna Pitts was seen in the wild video swinging a bat and hitting people, but her aunt says the video doesn’t tell the whole story.

“Things led up to that,” Tiara Hernandez said. “It wasn’t just Jontaianna swinging a bat, it was Jontaianna defending herself and her mom if that was even Jontaianna. I can’t say, I wasn’t there.”

Hernandez said that she is concerned that Pitts’ reputation will be damaged as a result of the video.

“I’m worried it’s blowing up on social media and it’s been taken too far,” Hernandez said. “It would be one thing if it was the truth, if she was a violent person and was really just trying to cause harm for no apparent reason, not defending herself.

This video has shaken up the area with locals tired of too much violence in their neighborhood.

“A lot of drama going on around here, for me, I just stay to myself,” said Master Clemons, who lives in the area of the fight.

Some are not surprised that the fight broke out in the neighborhood.

“Stuff always happens in this area, so I’m not surprised at what happened,” Johnea Mills said.

News4Jax crime and safety analyst Gil Smith pointed out that in cases like these people should not intervene and try to break it up. He recommends leaving it to police.

“Sometimes what happens is these people who are posting it, they may get bumped or hit and they get caught up in the fight too and it grows larger and larger,” Smith said.

Jacksonville police said a security guard was also injured during the fight. A guard stepped in to try and stop it. He was wearing a security uniform and he was hit several times. He suffered several abrasions to his arms but is expected to be okay.

Deputies: Palatka man arrested after dog left in sun dies

A 21-year-old Palatka man was arrested Thursday after deputies found his dog dead from dehydration while being left out in the sun, the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office said.

Landon Blaine Waldock was charged with one felony charge of animal cruelty after deputies found his 3-year-old dog dead in a small cage in direct sunlight at a home on Karen Drive.

Deputies said the dog had no shade or water when they arrived to the home at 2 p.m. Thursday.

Waldock, who was out of the county at the time, told deputies over the phone he hadn’t check the dog before he left, but had given the dog water and food “a day or so ago.”

A veterinarian who came to the home to assist determined the dog’s death was due to dehydration from the heat and lack of water, deputies said.

When Waldock returned home, deputies arrested him and took him to the Putnam County Jail. He has since been released on a $2,500 bond, deputies said.

“Cruelty to animals in this case was particularly egregious because this poor dog was forced to suffer a slow, painful death by withholding water and food during extremely high temperatures,” Putnam County Sheriff Gator DeLoach said. “We have a responsibility to ensure those who abuse animals are held accountable. They have no voice and depend on us to keep them safe.”

Police ID man found shot to death in NW Jacksonville home

A 43-year-old man was found shot to death Sunday night in his home in the Grand Park neighborhood of Northwest Jacksonville, according to the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office.

Police identified the victim as Bernard Thomas Lowe.

Officers responded just after 10:30 p.m. to investigate after a friend found the Lowe dead inside his home on West 10th Street.

“As far as I know right now is that someone came to the residence and located him,” Chuck Fordham of the JSO homicide unit said. “My detectives are interviewing them right now and they’re going to get more information as the night progresses.

Neighbors reported hearing multiple shots, Fordham said.

“Multiple gunshots could be from this residence, (or) they could be from another residence. We’re really not sure,” Fordham said. “This is part of the ongoing investigation that will continue throughout the night.”

Neighbors said the block is normally quiet, and most people did not know who lived there, only that the resident was a renter.

News4Jax used JSO’s crime mapping tool and found that in the last six months, within a half-mile radius, there were reports of:

30 assaults

10 burglaries

Eight vehicle break-in/thefts

Three motor vehicle thefts

Two robberies

Investigators said they are working to determine if there were any signs of forced entry.

Beached sailboat being removed from Atlantic Beach

A sailboat that ran aground in Atlantic Beach is being slowly towed back into the water Monday evening as the tide rises.

The 37-foot boat washed ashore about 4:30 a.m. Saturday near the 20th Street beach access, according to Atlantic Beach police.

The captain, Leslie McDaniel, 54, of Savannah, and his wife, Pamela McDaniel, 58, told police that they were a few miles offshore of Jacksonville sailing north to Savannah when at about 1 a.m. their vessel was knocked off course when it hit something in the water, and the waves washed them to shore.

Leslie McDaniel said he struck a rock while trying to navigate toward the Mayport jetty to safely dock for the night. Leslie McDaniel said that after the collision, he was unable to steer the boat and it began to drift south, eventually running ashore about 4 a.m. in Atlantic Beach.

Leslie McDaniel said the boat had no visible damage, although port holes may have allowed a small amount of water to enter the cabin.

Sea Tow had a boat out in the ocean about 4:30 p.m. slowly easing the sailboat into deeper water.

The Coast Guard said no leaks were coming from the boat, so the environment won’t be impacted.

The McDaniels were not injured and were back in Savannah, hoping to pick up the boat from the Savannah marina Monday night.