More details are emerging from unofficial sources about the timing and cause of an altercation that led to an MHS junior having his jaw broken in Manor Park on Friday, May 8. The victim did not know his assailant and was in the park before 10 pm when he was struck, according to the source.
Meanwhile, police continued with their investigation and beer bottles continue to be found in the park on weekend mornings.
Sam Sawyer, a Larchmont teen, was with a group of MHS friends in the park sometime between 9 and 10 pm, said the unofficial source, who was not at the scene. They encountered a group of students he had never seen before. The other group “started to get rough with whoever was there,” said the source.
“They started to push another kid” from a separate group of teens. When Sam turned around to see if the other student was OK, “next thing he knew he was punched in the face by one kid,” recounted the source.
The MHS students observed “a large muscular group of kids kicking the fences” at the park, said the source.
Sam was later treated for a broken jaw at White Plains Hospital at around midnight. His jaw was wired shut. After missing three days of school, he returned to classes.
Vandalism & Assault Before Police Arrived?
The account, if accurate, means the vandalism and assault occurred before 10:15 pm, when police responded to two complaints of a large numbers of youths in the road on Park Avenue.
Police dispersed the youths after “performing a cursory search of the area for damage,” according to previous police accounts and a formal release issued May 14 by the Larchmont Police Department.
At the May 19 meeting of the Larchmont Village Board of Trustees, Village Attorney Jim Staudt counseled the trustees to refrain from engaging in a public Q and A with Chief Poleway about the incident. The “no comment” practice is long-standing and not unique to the current event, said Mr. Staudt. The aim is to avoid compromising the investigation.
Local residents and others have been offering their own suppositions and observations, many published in comments on the Gazette. Many are blaming the mayhem on Rye Neck students angry when a planned fight with MHS students was thwarted. Others speculate it was local kids.
Another unofficial source said students from both schools were shuttling through the police department and “giving up” those involved.
Karin Sherman, president of the Larchmont Manor Park Society that owns and maintains the park, said security had been beefed up. Extended hours for their guard had already been scheduled before the incident occurred.
The fences will be replaced within the week, said Ms. Sherman. But the full extent of the damage and the costs cannot be determined until a mason comes in to cap the new fence posts. When ripping up the fences, the vandals also destroyed parts of the cement footing.
Asked about the possibility of Larchmont’s police patrolling the park, Ms Sherman explained that “unless there is a complaint called in, the police don’t enter the park – it’s private property.”