600 Party In A Salisbury Neighborhood, Locals React - 47 ABC - Delmarva's Choice

600 Party In A Salisbury Neighborhood, Locals React

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Courtesy Salisbury Police Courtesy Salisbury Police

SALSIBURY, Md. - A series of college parties Saturday afternoon resulted in dozens of people getting pepper sprayed by police.  Now, some are questioning how officers handled the situation.

 It's a shocking sight even for Kristine Adams, whose company, Adams Housing, rents rooms to students in the area.

"My god!  It was beyond anything I've ever seen in my 20 years," she said.

Daniel Spain, who lives in the neighborhood near Smith Street and Hazel Avenue, says parties happen pretty often with the college crowd, but this one, apparently, got out of hand.

Police video shows nearly 600 people packing Smith Street and Hazel Avenue that afternoon.  Officers, responding to noise complaints, came to disperse the crowd, when things took a tumultuous turn. 

In a press conference, Salisbury Police Chief Barbara Duncan said "as a Wicomico County sheriff deputy arrived, several as of yet unidentified persons threw full beer cans at the deputy's patrol vehicle."

A Salisbury University student who attended the party and lives on Hazel Avenue said "one, turned to 15 beer cans at her car and that's when the pepper spray came out."

According to police, pepper spray was used only after party goers began to assault officers with the full cans.

This isn't the first time Salisbury has seen a college party escalate to the point of party goers being pepper sprayed.  Last April, rowdy "War On The Shore" parties around the area of Onley Road, resulted in multiple arrests.     

"War On The Shore" is the last Salisbury University Lacrosse home game of the regular season.  Officers used minor force and pepper spray to get crowds under control.

While most agree, this year's unauthorized block party needed to be shut down, some believe police used too much force, too quickly.

Daniel Spain tells WMDT, he and his young daughter were caught in the cross fire of the pepper spray, telling us "oh, she got blasted all across the face".

Members of the community are supportive of students living in the surrounding neighborhoods, but they stress, the students need to be more conscious of the neighborhood in which they live.

" I also think we can't make the mistake of making the horrible broad generalization that all the students are bad, all the landlords are bad, the university is at fault..."

Police arrested five people for violating the city noise ordinance, but they are still looking into who might've thrown cans at the officers.  All those arrested were released after receiving a citation, and police say no one was injured.


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