HUNTSVILLE, Ala. -- The Madison County District Attorney’s office is trying to locate many of the guns shown in a recent “mannequin challenge” video that led to an early morning raid by the Madison County Sheriff’s Office this week.
Kevin Turner, chief investigator in the DA’s office, said the volume of guns is a concern.
The video also has an unusual subject matter.
“And for all the police officers that have seen this, that’s the first thing that came to them, was, you know they’re reenacting, or trying to make people think they’re reacting to a drive-by shooting,” Turner said.
He said the video’s theme, which seems to be a form of showing off to get attention, isn’t a surprise.
“We see a lot of these videos,” Turner said. “We’ll see weapons involved and guys portraying a certain lifestyle. This particular video was noticeably a lot of weapons involved, and it drew a lot of attention, not only in the state, but obviously nationwide.
“Naturally we want to do an investigation and try and get those guns off the street.”
The video will now be used by law enforcement to put together cases and as a potential reference point in future investigations.
“What they don’t know, is when they post something like this, especially with weapons involved, to the caliber they had, any weapon for that matter, but, with that many weapons you’re going to draw the attention of the sheriff’s department, of HPD,” Turner said.
“And now, you’re talking about the district attorney’s office. We’re going to try and take it to another level and try to see how many of them we can get off the street.”
Turner said investigators could use the video directly to try to bring cases against some of the people shown in it.
“You know if we can prove if the weapons themselves were actually real,” he said. “I think we have to do that, and then we have to find out who is on probation, who’s on parole, talk to the probation officers, find out from them. And then ultimately get with the DA and the judge and we’ll find out if we have a case.”
The video may also help in future investigations.
“A lot of times we’ll have people come to court, or investigators will go out and interview them: ‘Well, I don’t know that guy, I’ve never hung out with that guy, I don’t run around with that guy, I’m not in that clique,’ that kind of thing,” Turner said. “Well, we got a video right here, that you and 15 or 20 other guys -- that you say you don’t hang out with or run around with -- are sitting there pointing pistols at one another, point rifles at one another.”