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Police Respond to Chaos as Over 500 Juveniles Spark Violence at South Jersey Community Event

An event for the community in Gloucester Township, South Jersey, turned turbulent when police had to deal with multiple fights started by more than 500 teenagers and young adults. As a result, about twelve people, some of whom were only 13 years old, were taken into custody.

On a Saturday night, the much-anticipated drone light show for Gloucester Township Day brought families to Veterans Park, where chaos broke out. An already congested situation was made worse by law enforcement officials’ observation of an abnormally high number of minors being dropped off at the event.

As hostilities increased, fights broke out between various groups within the assembly, necessitating the police’s quick intervention. Concerns for public safety forced the event organizers to speed the start of the drone exhibition due to the disorderly behavior of the guests.

Even after the planned event ended, there were still disturbances for a few hours, and police had to labor nonstop to get the unruly mobs to disperse. Unfortunately, a number of people reported getting hurt during the disturbance, and three police officers were hurt while attempting to calm things down.

One adult guy who was arrested was accused of attacking an officer and trying to escape from detention. There were only two adult suspects—Ronald Jones and Kevin Coleman—and most of the arrests were minors between the ages of 13 and 17.

Authorities emphasized that most of the young people accused were not Gloucester Township residents and were picked up by others to attend the gathering.

Due to the severity of the incident, there had to be a large police presence; some seventy Gloucester Township officers as well as reinforcements from nearby jurisdictions responded to the area.

Chief of Police David Harkins of Gloucester Township strongly denounced the lawlessness displayed, stating that it was not in line with the community’s ideals.

Amidst a backdrop of similar occurrences happening throughout the state, the disruption at the event serves as yet another depressing reminder of the issues posed by preserving public safety at big gatherings involving young people.

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