Police investigating YouTube footageClips showed youngsters fighting

09 April 2008

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Police have been investigating footage posted on the YouTube website showing a series of clips of children and young people fighting each other.

In one section of the two-minute film a girl is shown being punched to the ground in broad daylight as part of a gang fight.

Further images feature two boys believed to be wearing school uniforms trading punches until one is knocked to the ground.

Hastings Fights

Another clip shows a shaven-headed man walking into a pub and then throwing stools over the bar in front of customers as a woman tries to remonstrate with him.

The video, entitled Hastings Fights made by Jibz and posted on the site by DunKnoProduky, shows seven different scenes edited to the sound of a hip hop song.

The images are understood to have been filmed in and around the seaside resorts of Hastings and St Leonards in East Sussex.

Removed

The video has since been removed by YouTube but a copy has been passed to Sussex Police, who said today that its contents will be examined.

A police spokesman said: 'We'll be viewing the footage in due course in order to establish whether or not there are any offences which need to be investigated.'

YouTube said it would help any police investigation.

YouTube community

A YouTube spokesman said: 'YouTube is a community site used by millions of people in very positive ways.

'Sadly, as with any form of communication, there is a tiny minority of people who try to break the rules.

'On YouTube, these rules prohibit content like pornography or gratuitous violence. When people see content that they think is inappropriate they can flag it and our staff then review it.

'If the content breaks our terms then we remove it and if a user repeatedly breaks the rules we disable their account.

'If the police ask us for information, we will co-operate, so long as they follow the correct legal process that the government introduced.'

Punches

Last month footage was posted on YouTube of two 12-year-old boys apparently being goaded into fighting each other by a man in Crawley, West Sussex.

A 21-year-old man from Crawley who was arrested on suspicion of aiding and abetting an assault has been bailed pending advice from the Crown Prosecution Service.

The arrest was made after images were published of the two boys exchanging punches, kicks and headbutts as a man filming the attack in a bedroom encouraged them.

Sussex Police later said the two boys had been identified and are safe and well.

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