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Tupelo Police Advisory Board member speaks on Wells

Pastor Ron Richardson says Wells situation could have been handled better.

Posted: Mar 23, 2021 7:08 PM
Updated: Mar 24, 2021 3:23 PM

TUPELO,(MISS)-- A member of the Tupelo Police Advisory Board says the situation with Wesley Wells at the Barnes Crossing Mall in Tupelo last Tuesday should have been handled differently.

Pastor Ron Richardson is a retired hospital chaplain at the North Mississippi Medical Center.

He has been on the Tupelo Police Advisory Board for the past three years he says. He had some very interesting things to say about the incident at the Barnes Crossing Mall last Tuesday involving Wesley Wells and the Tupelo Police.

"Whatever the good intentions were , whatever procedure they had been taught to take with this, it flew in the face of Wesley Wells." Richardson said.

Tupelo businessman Wesley Wells was handcuffed and planced in the back seat of a Tupelo police patrol car when he was mistaken for a wanted shoplifter.

Pastor Richardson said there are still some unanswered questions but he offered his view of what happened. "He is a black man and he was stopped by the police most likely put him on the defensive. And that defensiveness spelled fear to me. How he was going to be treated and how it was going to be like for him to have this interview with white police officers." he said.

As for Wells himself,Richardson wished he had responded differently as well. "I think what added insult to injury for Wesley, was that he refused to give his name . I wish that he had given his name in the very beginning." Richardson continued. "I wish that he had considered the fact that he was being stopped for a reason That he was not just being stopped to check him out." he continued.

Richardson said the incident is a sad one involving an innocent man.

He said police did not know him(Wells) and he did have on a white t-shirt and hat which fit the description of the shoplifter.

He said it shows there is still work for the police advisory board and others to do in light of the situation. "I just think that given the relationship between the black community and white community and the police department , we need to do more than just sit back and sweep this under the rug and hope it will be forgotten about." Richardson said.

Richardson also said that he would like to see Wesley Wells involved in furture community relations efforts with police.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 479326

Reported Deaths: 9353
CountyCasesDeaths
Harrison32779484
Hinds30924582
DeSoto30319353
Jackson23542341
Rankin21235366
Lee14803219
Madison14120271
Jones13327223
Forrest13078236
Lauderdale11501303
Lowndes10377176
Lamar10163130
Pearl River9008217
Lafayette8193137
Hancock7404111
Oktibbeha6909122
Washington6900150
Monroe6459159
Neshoba6441201
Warren6387163
Pontotoc623093
Panola6203125
Bolivar6072144
Marshall6068121
Union571386
Pike5574135
Alcorn533289
Lincoln5283131
George466072
Scott454796
Leflore4444140
Prentiss443377
Tippah442180
Itawamba441599
Adams4376116
Tate4327101
Simpson4313112
Wayne430766
Copiah429587
Yazoo419686
Covington413292
Sunflower4123104
Marion4073104
Leake395486
Coahoma391098
Newton367274
Grenada3543104
Stone350359
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Attala324286
Jasper313162
Winston303091
Clay294173
Chickasaw286265
Clarke279890
Calhoun263940
Holmes261387
Smith248048
Yalobusha219647
Tallahatchie217550
Walthall209958
Greene206845
Lawrence205732
Perry198553
Amite197651
Webster195042
Noxubee177739
Montgomery171654
Jefferson Davis167442
Carroll161437
Tunica150834
Benton141533
Kemper138039
Claiborne126134
Choctaw126026
Humphreys125937
Franklin116328
Quitman103426
Wilkinson101536
Jefferson87333
Sharkey62320
Issaquena1926
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 778549

Reported Deaths: 13665
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson1105871747
Mobile704651206
Madison49152610
Baldwin35946479
Shelby35796302
Tuscaloosa33410532
Montgomery32906672
Lee22231216
Calhoun20791397
Morgan19605326
Etowah18837449
Marshall17465272
Houston16452368
St. Clair15233293
Limestone14376182
Cullman14348246
Elmore14241256
Lauderdale13298278
Talladega12699230
DeKalb12036233
Walker10430323
Autauga9568133
Blount9555152
Jackson9235146
Coffee8728169
Colbert8426179
Dale8410170
Escambia6526114
Tallapoosa6501172
Covington6396163
Chilton6293141
Russell598555
Franklin5719100
Chambers5315133
Marion4734115
Dallas4665182
Clarke457076
Pike456294
Geneva4315116
Winston417192
Lawrence4086108
Bibb401680
Barbour341968
Marengo323183
Butler314988
Monroe314652
Pickens300470
Randolph299955
Henry298356
Hale289383
Cherokee284652
Fayette275672
Washington244848
Crenshaw235168
Clay225163
Macon217657
Cleburne217149
Lamar192140
Conecuh179646
Lowndes170158
Coosa166432
Wilcox155736
Bullock147742
Perry136036
Sumter124136
Greene120142
Choctaw72826
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