Amusement park fight over knives in N.H., family arrested

E. Allan Perry, 45, (top right), his three children, 23-year-old Joshua; 18-year-old Brian; and 18-year-old Damien; and his daughter-in-law, 20-year-old Ashley Perry.

CBS Boston

SALEM, N.H. - Five members of a Vermont family assaulted police officers during a melee that erupted when security guards at a southern New Hampshire amusement park told them to leave their knives in the car, according to authorities.

The fracas started at about 1:30 p.m. Monday when the Perry family tried to enter Canobie Lake Park in Salem. Some of the family members had hunting knives on their belts and were told they couldn't bring them into the park, police said.

The family became belligerent and eventually two Salem officers responded to quell the disturbance. However, police said the family only became more irate, yelling profanities at the officers in front of other visitors.

"This family was hell bent on creating a disturbance," Salem Police Deputy Chief Shawn Patten told CBS Boston. "And they did just that."

After several verbal warnings, an officer told one man he was under arrest and tried to handcuff him, leading to the fight that included people jumping on the backs of the officers, punching, kicking and grabbing for their weapons, police said. Two officers were injured, including one who was treated at a hospital for a dislocated shoulder.

As backup officers arrived, the mother of the family faked a seizure, police said. She was examined by paramedics and released at the scene.

Those arrested included E. Allan Perry, 45, of Lyndon, Vt., and his three sons: Joshua Perry, 23, and Brian and Damian Perry, both 18. They face a variety of charges including felony riot, resisting arrest, disorderly conduct and assault. Also arrested, and charged with disorderly conduct and trespassing, was 20-year-old Ashley Perry, wife of one of the sons.

Bail for the accused ranged from $5,000 to $10,000. Several of the family members are due back in court on June 25.

"They turned what could have been a perfect day at a family park into a nightmare," said Patten, the Deputy Police Chief.