Police: Tear Gas Used after Massive Fights Break Out at WMU Student Housing

Posted at 11:46 PM, Apr 12, 2014
and last updated 2014-04-12 23:59:43-04

KALAMAZOO, MicWestern Michigan April 12Western April 12h. (April 12, 2014) – Kalamazoo Public Safety officers responded to several calls of a disturbance in the area of Lafayette and Redwood streets.

The calls reported large groups of people gathering, open consumption of alcohol, and excessive noise.

Upon arrival to the area, KDPS officers found large crowds in the Lafayette/Knollwood Campus Court apartment area. Initially the crowds were peaceful, and officers monitored the event students called the “House Crawl”.

The crowd grew to an estimated 2,000 people, and eventually became hostile toward each other with several fights breaking out.

As Kalamazoo Public Safety and Western Michigan University police officers attempted to restore peace and break up the fighting, the crowd turned hostile toward the officers. Bottles and rocks were thrown at the police officers.

Additional resources and equipment were brought in to control the situation. A police zone was established, and several announcements were made to clear the area. This was done in an effort to end the disturbance as the situation had become unsafe.

A large portion of the crowd refused to leave the area. Several fights and hostile behavior toward the police continued. Officers were forced to use tear gas to control and disperse the crowd in order to render the situation safe.

The streets were littered with broken glass and cans, and officers dealt with furniture that was set on fire by the crowd during the incident. There were no reported injuries during this incident.

Anyone who may have information regarding this investigation is asked to call Kalamazoo Public Safety at 337-8994 or Silent Observer at 343-2100 or