The latest Blarney Blowout left four cops injured as they attempt to disperse masses in riot form. The Blarney’s Blowout is a pre-St. Patrick’s Day celebration that takes place in and around the University of Massachusetts. The drunken disorderliness escalated throughout the day and into Saturday night. Police have arrested 73 people in relation to the celebration of the pre-St. Patrick’s day bash.
Blarney Blowout began in bars in the Amherst area to offer students an opportunity to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day before spring break begins. Masses of students gathered in different areas both on and off campus in order to participate in the Blowout’s events. Shortly after noon, The U Mass territory was under siege in multiple areas with massive amounts of intoxicated individuals. Police from several different areas of law enforcement including the state, city, and university responded to a large crowd assembled outside an off campus apartment complex. The officials converged on a horde of approximately 4,000 individuals bearing riot gear and other official protection. As the officers diffused the mob they were bombarded with glass bottles, beer cans, and snowballs.
Upon this dispersal, masses ascended into an on campus location near an intersection and a frat house. Once again the accumulation of individuals established numbers in the thousands. Officers arrived and assessed the situation as treacherously and out of control. The uncontrollable conglomeration renewed prior actions of heaving rocks, cans, bottles, and snow balls. In order to counter act this behavior Police dispensed pepper spray out of weapons resembling paint guns. Four officers in total were injured in the riot forming, Blarney Blowout. Three of the officers were harmed due to the debris that was viciously catapulted at them, and another was hurt while placing an arrest.
Police Capt. Jennifer Gunderson stated the department was overloaded with numerous noise complaints, reports of fights, and highly intoxicated individuals throughout the night. Officers continued capturing assailants until early Sunday morning. Over 73 people were arrested with charges ranging from inciting to riot, liquor law violations, failing to disperse, disorderly conduct, and assault and battery on officers. Blarney Blowout is notorious for unruliness and drunken mishaps. Although, the University of Massachusetts has not seen such reprehensible actions at this level during the celebration.
Any student receiving discipline for an alcohol-related incident that took place last year during the Blarney Blowout was contacted by letter. These were sent out as an extra precaution to ensure that similar behavior would not be tolerated. The plentiful arrests during the Blarney Blowouts in the past contributed to the increased police presence the students were forewarned of. The savage behavior was denounced by UMass and states that all students involved will be analyzed under the schools code of conduct. Once each case is reviewed the sanctions can possibly include suspension or expulsion. The pre-party week before St. Patrick’s day is proving to be debauchery for many schools. Penn State has gone as far as paying liquor establishments to close during the unofficial drinking holiday. The Blarney Blowout injuring four cops and inciting riots should place it the same level as freaknik, cancelled and closed for business.
Editorial By Ebony Waller