VIDEO: Gun-Wielding Mannequin Challenge Video Leads to Arrests in Alabama
From one angle, the video appeared to be of a Madame Tussauds Wax Museum exhibit — a reenacted modern-day gunfight in rural Alabama involving at least 19 guns and 22 young men, frozen in time, scored by the pulsating beat of pounding rap music.
It was a version, albeit an edgy and ultimately inadvisable one, of the mannequin challenge — that Internet craze of filming a scene of stark-still people, generally with the song “Black Beatles” by Rae Sremmurd playing over it.
The video was filmed in Huntsville, Ala., but Facebook allowed it to reach those far beyond the borders of the 186,000-person, NASA-centric city. Posted about a month ago on Nov. 9, it has been shared more than 85,000 times, AL.com reported, meaning it reached a lot of eyeballs.
Including those of the Madison County Sheriff’s office, who likely wondered if those 19 guns were accompanied by the proper licenses and permits. Given that the house was caught on film, police investigated further and eventually got a search warrant for the property on Powell Drive in Huntsville.
“At 5:02 this morning,” Capt. Mike Salomonsky said in a news conference on Tuesday. “The Madison County Sheriff’s Office SWAT team, the City of Huntsville Police Department SWAT team, and also ATF were present when we executed the search warrant at that residence.”
They found two handguns, one semi-automatic rifle and a single-barrel shotgun, a tactical vest, ammunition, marijuana, and drug paraphernalia, Salomonsky said.
Police arrested 49-year-old Kenneth Fennell White on two charges — possession of marijuana and being a felon in possession of a firearm, according to Salomonsky. His bond was set at $30,000.
They also arrested 23-year-old Terry Brown for possession of drug paraphernalia, loitering and promoting prison contraband. The latter charge stemmed from Brown arriving to prison with marijuana on his person, according to Salomonsky. His bail was set at $3,800, the Washington Post reports.
And more arrests may be imminent.
“There are several persons in the video who may be convicted felons,” Salomonsky said. “So, we’re going to try to do some identification, work with the ATF and see if we can generate any charges out of that.”