Video, photos, rumors circulate about bloody Beale Street fight

Video from Beale Street fight draws strong reactions
Video and photos are circulating social media on Sunday after a fight reportedly broke out on Beale Street. (Source: Facebook)
Video and photos are circulating social media on Sunday after a fight reportedly broke out on Beale Street. (Source: Facebook)

(WMC) - A video is making its way around social media after a fight reportedly broke out on Beale Street early Sunday morning. The video shows a man, lying on the ground with his pants pulled down, bleeding from the head as a group of people take photos and video with their cellphones.

Rumors are circulating that the man died before arriving at the hospital. Those are rumors that Memphis Police Department say are not true.

According to police, the man was found unconscious around 2:25 a.m. Sunday morning. The officer who arrived on the scene said he did speak to the victim, who told the officer his name, but when asked what happened, the victim only said, "I'm straight."

The victim would not tell police what happened nor would he identify the person(s) who hurt him. He was taken to the hospital in critical condition, but was later upgraded to non-critical condition.

Why didn't anyone put down their phones and help? That is the question many people are asking.

"I can't believe people are standing around actually watching that happen to someone and not doing anything about it," said Melony Widener, who lives in Millington.

In the video, dozens of people can be seen recording the scene on their cell phones.

"If you see someone getting hurt on the streets, you wanna help them out, not 'Oh, let's take pictures and see how many people like it,'" said Daniella Merritt.

Beale Street Merchant Association President Ty Agee was speechless when he saw the video on Sunday morning.

"I try to look at the best in everybody. You hate to see things like that. But you know, these days bad things happen and there is not explanation for it," he said.

"I see police cars here, but I don't actually see the police walking around," said April Soto. "Why wouldn't that draw the attention of police of a large crowd that's not standing around to watch the music?"

Agee says believe it or not, officers are outnumbered on Beale Street. He says most Saturdays, there are at least 10,000 people there. On Saturday night, there were 60 officers on the clock.

"Two-hundred people per one police officer and on a Saturday night, it could be packed where it might take you five minutes to walk from Blues City to Silky O' Sullivans because it's so full," Agee said.

Even so, Agee says there is no excuse for the behavior of the bystanders who did nothing to help the victim.

"This is the most iconic street in the nation and we need to treat it as such and those kinds of things just can't happen," he said.

Agee says such incidents are an ongoing problem, not just on Beale Street, but all over the city. He says there will be changes coming to Beale Street, in terms of security and more. He also added that the incident will not have any impact on Elvis Week.

Police say the victim was too intoxicated to give officers enough information for them to write up a full police report.

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