KEENE, N.H. (AP/CBS) — Police worked to contain out-of-control crowds of students with tear gas and pepper spray Saturday night after mayhem erupted during a New Hampshire pumpkin festival.
Several people were injured and at least a dozen were arrested as young people gathered for the Keene Pumpkin Festival near Keene State College clashed with police in riot gear.
About 30 people were injured as hundreds of students threw beer cans and bottles at police and ripped up street signs, fire officials said. Police used pellets and pepper spray to try and disperse the crowds.
Keene State College President Anne Huot said in a statement that the school will hold involved students responsible for their behavior.
“Despite the concerted efforts of organizers, city officials, police, and Keene State College, there continued to be disruptive behavior at parties in multiple locations around the city, injuries, and property damage,” Huot said. “We deplore the actions of those whose only purpose was to cause mayhem.”
Raw video: Mayhem After Keene Pumpkin Festival (Video credit Jason Harrington)
Huot said that the school and local officials need to work together to make sure future festivals are not spoiled.
The unrest continued into the night, as students overturned cars and photos on social media showed fires on the street near the campus.
“We got calls from our parents saying be careful,” one young man told WBZ-TV.
Gov. Maggie Hassan said Saturday that she will continue to monitor the situation.
“State and local public safety officials are on the scene and have been working closely together to defuse the situation,” she said in a statement. “I was in Keene this afternoon and met with our public safety officials and visited the medical tent and other volunteers.”
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