Tensions rise in Pelahatchie: police arrest mayor’s mother, husband on misdemeanor charges

In statement, the mayor claims people in community, positions of power have made life “very difficult”
Updated: Apr. 11, 2019 at 8:44 PM CDT
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PELAHATCHIE, MS (WLBT) - Two arrests over the last four weeks involving members of the mayor’s family have many Pelahatchie residents talking, though no one would do so on camera.

3 On Your Side has confirmed through the city's arrest docket that Jalene L. Perry has been charged with disturbing the peace.

Perry is Mayor Ryshonda Beechem’s mother.

Sources within the city tell 3 On Your Side it happened April 4 at city hall, but other details of the disturbance have not been confirmed.

Pelahatchie’s arrest docket also reveals that police stopped Beechem’s husband, Roderick, last month and charged him with driving under the influence after he refused a breathalyzer test.

For someone to be charged with disturbing the peace -- a misdemeanor which carries a fine and possible jail time -- state law indicates that person would have been engaged in “violent, or loud, or insulting, or profane, or indecent, or offensive, or boisterous conduct or language, or by intimidation, or seeking to intimidate any other person."

Though the arrest docket does not indicate this, the law violated could also be one involving disturbing the peace “in a public place,” which is defined a bit differently: “loud and offensive talk, the making of threats or attempting to intimidate, or any other conduct which causes a disturbance or breach," but only in a public place.

The incident comes as tensions continue to rise between Beechem and members of the board of aldermen over how the city should be run.

In the most recent meeting on April 1, Beechem said Alderman At Large Eddie Jones used a tone with her and she argued that it was offensive.

That disagreement soon devolved into questions regarding who was in charge of the meeting, the aldermen or the mayor.

Beechem responded to questions about the arrests in a text message statement to WLBT Thursday morning.

“Since I was elected, it appears that there are elements within the community and in positions of power that have made me and my families life (sic) very difficult,” Beechem said in the statement. “I will continue to pray for discernment and I ask for prayers.”

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