Officers are investigating after four black Wynne High School football players were forced to the ground and held at gunpoint by a jail administrator’s wife in Arkansas.
One of the players, a 16 year old sophomore, told WREG-TV that he and three of his teammates were going door to door selling cards for a school fundraiser last week, but they ran into trouble when a woman came out with a gun as they walked up her driveway.
The woman, identified later as 46-year old Jerri Kelly, demanded they get on the ground and forced them to spread their legs, and keep their hands behind their backs.
The student says two of the players had their football jerseys on to help identify themselves.
Kelly called 911 and made the players stay on the ground until an officer arrived.
Wynne Police Chief Jackie Clark said officers responded to the “suspicious persons” report and found Kelly pointing a gun at the four juveniles who were lying on the ground, WMC reported.
After the officer let the children stand up, they explained that they were selling discounted cards for school football games.
Kelly was arrested “on four counts of aggravated assault, false imprisonment and endangering the welfare of a minor.”
When WMC asked Cross County Sheriff David West why the jail did not have a mugshot for Kelly, he claimed it was because she had a “medical issue” during booking.
The news outlet noted that Kelly’s husband is Cross County Jail Administrator Joe Kelly.
But West insisted that Kelly did not get any special treatment.
“I’m professional. My department is professional. There was no special treatment. She went through the steps just like any other person would,” the sheriff insisted.
Wynne Public Schools says the team sells coupons every year. Superintendent Carl Easley released a statement saying, “We intend to review all methods of fundraising used by school groups in grades K-12 to insure the safety of our children.” He says the school district might get rid of door to door fundraising all together.