From Fort Mill Police Reports reviewed this week:
On New Year’s Day, two Fort Mill police officers were dispatched to Harris Street Park about “suspicious activity with a group of individuals performing military style drills,” a police report says.
The officers found a group of males under a covered area of the park. A man who identified himself as Joe Israel said he was with a school/church group under the name “One Body.” He said they were trying to build discipline and structure in the members using the drills.
The officer told the man about the anonymous call reporting suspicious activity from a group doing military-style drills at the park. The man said he understood but asked to go back to the drills.
In the police incident report, Officer Reif noted what he saw. Here is what he wrote:
“Officers stood by to observe and while the group was standing in formation, Israel would ask, ‘What time is it?’ which the group replied with, ‘war time.’ Before departing, Officer Reif asked Israel for his name once more and the name of his organization when another individual that appeared to be leading along with Israel became verbally defensive. Officers were able to verbally deescalate the situation and Israel advised the group would be departing shortly.”
Before the group left, the officers jotted down several of the license plate numbers of the vehicles in the parking lot, which included three South Carolina tags, two North Carolina tags and a Florida tag.