Three Edison students who were charged with disorderly conduct pleaded not guilty in court.
The boys were with about a dozen basketball teammates Wednesday morning on Main Street waiting for a school bus to take them to a scrimmage at Aquinas. There was no school that day and their coach had arranged for a pick-up at a central meeting spot.
An officer asked the boys to disperse and they refused. The young men say they tried to explain to him they were waiting for a school bus. The officer arrested three of the players.
"We didn't do nothing," said Raliek Redd. "We was just trying to go to our scrimmage."
"We was just waiting for our bus and he started arrested us," said Wan'Tauhjs Weathers.
"You just downtown, minding your own business, and next thing you know, anything can happen," said Daequon Carelock.
The police report says the students were obstructing "pedestrian traffic while standing on a public sidewalk...preventing free passage of citizens walking by and attempting to enter and exit a store...Your complainant gave several lawful clear and concise orders for the group to disperse and leave the area without complaince."
The report does not accuse the boys of using abusive or obscense language.
A department statement issued Wednesday evening affirms the account in the paperwork.
The boys' families had to post $200 bail to make sure they were home for Thanksgiving.
Their coach, Jacob Scott, who is also a district guidance counselor, arrived at the location as the three students were placed in handcuffs. Scott said he pleaded with the officer to let the boys go, saying he was supervising them.
"He goes on to say, 'If you don't disperse, you're going to get booked as well,'" Scott said. "I said, 'Sir, I'm the adult. I'm their varsity basketball coach. How can you book me? What am I doing wrong? Matter of fact, what are these guys doing wrong?'"
Scott said a sergeant showed up and backed up his officer.
"One of the police officers actually told me, if he had a big enough caravan, he would take all of us downtown," Scott said.
Scott said the incident was traumatic for the players who got arrested and the players who witnessed the arrests and such treatment of their coach.
"It's a catastrophe. These young men were doing nothing wrong, nothing wrong. They did exactly what they were supposed to do and still they get arrested," said Scott. "I'm speaking to the officers with dignity...and still and yet - they see me get treated like nothing."
Rochester school board member Mary Adams showed up to the arraignment.
"I think the charges should be immediately dropped and I think the district attorney's office should be stepping in an looking at these kinds of matters," Adams said.
A trial date has been set for December 11.
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