Darien Long, the security guard who became an Internet sensation after posting videos of himself fighting crime at downtown’s Metro Mall, was arrested late Thursday afternoon and charged with battery.
Atlanta police officers were called to the mall near the Five Points MARTA station after Long, 45, allegedly tackled a patron to the ground unprovoked.
APD spokeswoman Kim Jones said Long told officers the man had been warned to stay away.
“The video from inside the mall clearly shows Mr. Long run up to this person from the side and tackle him to the ground,” Jones said. “Mr. Long could not produce any documentation to back up his claim that the victim had been given a trespass warning and the video depicts Mr. Long acting as the primary aggressor.”
Long remained in Fulton County jail on a $2,000 bond early Friday.
It’s been a tough week for the vigilante guard, who, before his arrest, learned he was fired, effective at month’s end.
“The party line is that they can’t afford me,” said Long, the onsite manager of the mall who became a hero to many for his no-nonsense approach to dealing with criminals. “But it’s not like I make much money.”
Long’s tactics captured national attention when a lapel-cam video showing him tasing a woman who had verbally and physically attacked him was posted Jan. 28 on Wordstarhiphop.com. It’s since garnered nearly 2 million views.
An online drive to raise money to buy him better equipment followed, with pledges topping $20,000.
Read more: AJC