Marketing Urban Violence 101
By Dave Lucas
Utica, NY – Utica police and the Oneida County District Attorney are using a video to aid in their investigation into an assault last week that resulted in a 16-year old being hospitalized. Capital District Bureau Chief Dave Lucas reports.
The fight started with two people at the corner of James Street and Seymour Avenue. A group numbering around ten eventually jumped in --- it was recorded on video then uploaded to Utica-based rap group A.G.A.M.E.'s YouTube page. The beating victim, Sanel Nadarevic, is a 10th grader who was interviewed by the Utica Observer-Dispatch newspaper on Monday, but later decided to retract his comments. He moved to Utica with his family from Bosnia 12 years ago.
A.G.A.M.E.'s manager Tony "Tino" Brown says the group - whose name stands for Achieving Greatness And Maintaining Excellence - had nothing to do with the fight. Brown lives up the street from where the assualt occurred and just happened to be toting his camcorder when fighting broke out. In an interview with WKTV, Brown scoffs at allegations his video glorifies violence.
Brown says he's not surprised by the media attention the video received. He apparently was counting on the draw of negative images to raise A.G.A.M.E.'s recognition. He notes that everyone in the community is shocked and horrified when they see the video but goes on to state that this scene plays out in his community all the time and no one, including the media, pays any attention.
Oneida County District Attorney Scott McNamara says whether or the victim presses charges, authorities continue to investigate, with an eye toward prosecution. McNamara says the most compelling witness in the case is the video ... He could not say whether videographer Tino Brown will face any charges
Violent video used as "cross promotion" - Utica Observer-Dispatch