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JONESBORO, Ark. – Video of a brutal brawl on Main Street has been released by the Jonesboro Police Department to NEA Report through a Freedom of Information Act request.
It shows Cregeens bar staff and the two attackers following the victim from Cregeens as he appears to try to get away from the group. They followed him all the way down to Brickhouse. The video also shows the bar manager of Cregeens warning the assailants of the cops. She was accused of helping one of the attackers get away.
The video appears to be shot by a customer on the balcony of Brickhouse (the expletive-laden caption isn’t ours. Sorry). It shows the victim, longer hair/slim, appearing to flee from a group walking toward him. That group includes Cregeens bartender Andrew Miller, bar manager Krystine Breyette Cooper, and Bobby Joe Nutt, a regular bar patron of Cregeens according to the bar’s management.
Witnesses state that prior to the video, the victim made offensive contact with Cooper. As the video picks up after this alleged incident, the victim appears to run away at first then turns around and faces the large group.
Andrew Miller catches the man and slams the victim to the ground while Cooper repeatedly shouts for him to stop. Once he stands up, she tells him “Go. Go.” and points back toward Cregeens bar (on Main, she would be pointing toward Johnson).
After Miller slams the victim on the ground, Nutt goes into a total rage. He mounts the man. Nutt punches him at least seven or more times and then elbows him in the head.
“You want some? You motherfucker!” Nutt screams at the man who weighs half of him.
The man he screams at isn’t moving. Appearing to have lost control, Nutt screams several other inaudible statements.
Soon into the video, Brickhouse bouncer RC Cline jogs toward the assault. Cooper shouts the cops are coming. Cline gently puts his hand on “BJ’s” shoulder as Nutt throws several more punches. Cline, with others, finally pull Nutt off of the man.
The victim is now unconscious. It appeared he’s stopped breathing to a doctor that was on the scene seconds later.
“Cops!” Cooper shouts. “Let’s go!”
The group appear to walk back in the direction of Cregeens, with Cline appearing to follow. One witness specifically alleged Cooper helped Nutt to get away from the scene without arrest. Another witness, who was working downtown but said she would be fired if we used her name, told NEA Report bouncer Cline changed shirts with Nutt before Nutt escaped.
Defending the Attack Online
After our initial story based on witness interviews and public record was published, a few downtown patrons including Cregeens staff began defending the assault, claiming the victim deserved it, and even personally attacking this reporter. Most didn’t defend the heinous actions but the select few who were defending it stood out.
Danny Nanney, a Cregeens employee, made several trolling comments since our initial report last week, mostly toward this reporter. None of his comments showed concern for the victim.
Several more downtown regulars including musicians and servers piled onto the digital mob. But many citizens took note of how a few downtown regulars discounted the attack. Several posted comments specifically about that subject.
One man said he found it disappointing to see some of his friends defending the incident. He wasn’t alone.
“Never going to Cregeens again,” A woman said. “He didn’t deserve that.”
Almost immediately, two Cregeens trolls replied. The strong woman had none of it, telling them she wasn’t someone “who can be beaten into submission or simply made to feel less online–this is not enough for people with character to submit to oppression.”
Several far worse comments were made which we won’t publish here, ranging from one woman saying “F*** his teeth” to others claiming the victim got what he deserved. Several comments have since been deleted or removed due to Facebook moderators. All derisive comments appeared to be from friends of or actual Cregeens staff.
If anything, online attacks prove there was a clear intent by some downtown regulars to silence people from being overly critical of this incident. On top of that, sources said Cregeens staff and others were coercive to witnesses, even telling them what they “saw” before the witnesses spoke to police downtown.
Miller was the only person arrested for the crime.
With help, Nutt fled the scene. Possibly coincidentally, a hit-and-run happened near Main and Johnson around the same time.
No other arrests have been made.
Reporter’s note: It is NEA Report policy not to respond to personal attacks. In this rare instance, clarifying the record of falsehoods was deemed necessary to continue telling this story. It is also relevant in the context of efforts to silence this story from being told.
A dishonest allegation was made by the Cregeens bar manager involving this reporter following our first story. Cooper posted to her personal Facebook profile (deleting it a short time later…) that NEA Report was targeting her because she said no after being asked on a date by this reporter. This is a lie. Here is proof. As the messages from 2017 show, she said yes when asked out and gave me her number. We began talking for several weeks and then this reporter learned she had a boyfriend. As soon as I knew, I ended things. For some time, we were friends after but that also ended due to core ethical differences.
News coverage usually begins long before we know anyone’s name involved in the story. In this instance, our reporting began when witnesses contacted us about an incident downtown early Sunday. Then, we received a police report following a FOIA request from JPD on Monday. After reviewing the report, only then did I realize a familiar individual was involved. I reached out to her and questioned her. She answered several questions August 5 for our first story including saying she “wasn’t trying to cover anything up.”
Her attacks only began, like many others, when our reporting highlighted her involvement in events described in a police report.