RICHMOND — A funeral at a cemetery turned into a crime scene Saturday, when an uninvited family member showed up, sparked a fight, then used his vehicle to run over one of the attendees, police said.
Police arrested the man on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon, vandalism and making threats of great bodily harm, Richmond police spokesman Sgt. Aaron Pomeroy said. All three charges would be felonies.
Authorities did not identify the 36-year-old Bay Point resident, citing the investigation.
The rampage with the vehicle also resulted in some cemetery headstones being knocked over and damaged, Pomeroy said. A water line ruptured and flooded some grave sites.
The violence did not seem to be entirely unexpected
“We talked to one of the witnesses, who said she had concern there might be so much turmoil that she brought a stun gun for her own protection,” Richmond police spokesman Sgt. Aaron Pomeroy said.
It all happened about 1:30 p.m. inside Rolling Hills Memorial Park at 4100 Hilltop Dr.
According to Pomeroy, the family gathered to bury their matriarch, and another family member showed up unexpectedly and uninvited. When he was asked to leave, a fight ensued.
Eventually, the suspect got back into his car and tried to hit a person that police identified as his sister.
“He gets into an argument with his sister,” Pomeroy said. “The sister’s boyfriend comes to the rescue. (The suspect) gets into a fight with the sister’s boyfriend and punches him. At some point, (the suspect) goes back to his vehicle and gets in it.”
Chaos ensured, he said. A woman whom Pomeroy said was not the suspect’s sister was hit by the car and hospitalized. She was released Sunday after being treated for her injuries, Pomeroy said.
The suspect also went to a hospital and received treatment for a cut to his head, Pomeroy said.
Officers saw other vehicles leaving the cemetery as they were arriving. It was unclear whether any other funerals were occurring when the fight happened or if any other people visiting the graveyard saw it.
Pomeroy said police have not estimated the monetary damage done to the cemetery. They should have a better idea about that later Monday after an assessment by the cemetery manager.
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Author: Rick Hurd