Facebook comments trigger brawl at LaPorte Walmart

2014-03-05T17:30:00Z 2014-03-06T07:37:24Z Facebook comments trigger brawl at LaPorte WalmartStan Maddux Times Correspondent nwitimes.com
March 05, 2014 5:30 pm  • 

LAPORTE | Trash talk on Facebook along with a racial slur apparently triggered a Tuesday night brawl that ended with injuries and an ambulance being dispatched to the LaPorte Walmart.

LaPorte police are also seeking a warrant for the arrest of a 39-year-old man who they say punched two women in the face and struck one of them with a nightstick.

Angel Seeley, 20, of LaPorte, had a tooth knocked loose enough to be dangling from her gums, police said.

"My whole mouth is swollen and my tooth is knocked all the way back," she said.

About 7 p.m., police responded to the grocery section at Walmart, where the people involved in the altercation along with dozens of onlookers were still gathered.

Police said Seeley was engaged in some trash talking that included insults about a baby of one of the women involved.

Seeley said she and her two female friends happened upon a woman she had had volatile exchanges with on Facebook.

The women were arguing when the mother of the woman involved in the verbal altercation with Seeley shouted a racial slur.

Seeley said she was punched in the face by the mother and both of them started pulling each other's hair.

Police said the two women separated, and all of the parties had just gone through the checkout when Seeley was punched in the mouth by a 39-year-old man, whose daughter was part of the offensive Facebook exchanges.

He then started swinging an extendable nightstick, police said.

Seeley said she was hit just above the eye with the metal baton, and the man also punched Tiara Moore, 21, also of LaPorte, in the face.

Store personnel finally jumped in and with help from police broke up the fighting about 20 minutes after it first began.

Moore said she suffered some redness from the blow.

"He didn't harm me or my sister as badly as he hurt my friend," Moore said.

The man's daughter laid down on the floor and started having what may have been a seizure, police said.

The man rode with his daughter in an ambulance.

Police went to the hospital to speak with the man and learned he and his daughter had just left and medical staff found no evidence of an actual seizure.

A warrant was being sought to charge the man with two counts of battery.

LaPorte police Capt. Tom Heath said the fighting may have gone on for so long because some chain stores have policies that prohibit employees from trying to diffuse violation situations due to the potential liability.

"You don't want your employees getting into a battle and injuring somebody," Heath said.

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