Friday evening a police dash-cam video started circulating online showing a group of people brawling with police in a Walmart parking lot in Cottonwood, Arizona. Now news reports have identified the citizens in the brawl as members of a traveling Idaho-based Christian music group called Matthew 24 Now.
The family band apparently sing about the end times — and, as it turns out, are immune to tasers. In the videos below, one allegedly shouts “Jesus, I’m sorry!” as chaos breaks out.
From AZfamily.com: “Video from the dashboard camera of a Cottonwood Police Department cruiser showed a close-knit Idaho family that appeared nearly invulnerable to stun guns, police batons and fists during a melee in a Walmart parking lot March 21 in which one person was killed and one officer wounded by a gunshot.”
On March 21, Cottonwood police officers were called to investigate an assault on a Walmart employee that happened inside the store, but that quickly escalated when investigators tried to separate the Gaver family for questioning.
Cottonwood Police Chief Jody Fanning showed the video during a news conference Friday morning and said no matter what tactics officers used, nothing appeared to deter the family of eight. The dash-cam was the only one of three that was operational that night, Fanning said.
Four officers arrived at the Walmart after employees called about one of the Boise, ID, family members pushing an employee to the ground outside one of the store’s bathrooms.
The family had gathered outside their older model Chevrolet Suburban when officers arrived. The confrontation started when one of the officers said they would split up the family to talk with them about what happened inside the store, Fanning said.
But the father, 55-year-old Peter Gaver, and one of his sons stepped in and told police they wouldn’t allow them to separate the family, Fanning said.
According to reports, Matthew 24 Now were living out of their Chevrolet Suburban when the incident began. The band name is “a reference to a Bible verse dealing with the end of times. The band’s Facebook page is rife with Biblical references.”