10/31/2005

95 people arrested at OU Halloween party

The Associated Press

ATHENS, Ohio- Police made 95 arrests at Saturday night's Halloween block party, describing the crowd as belligerent but smaller than previous years.

A man was stabbed in the hand and a woman was injured escaping from an attempted rape, police spokesman James Mann said.

Police reported 14 fights and three assaults during the party, which has a history of rioting and vandalism. Forty-eight of those arrested are students at colleges and universities around the state.

The tradition, which is not sanctioned by the university, began in 1974. In recent years, crowds have been estimated around 25,000.

Police also issued 60 citations this year, including 22 for underage drinking and 14 for disorderly conduct. On Friday, police reported 33 arrests.

Mann did not have a crowd estimate this year but said fewer people turned out.

Last year, officers booked 98 people. Police made 66 arrests during the 2003 party, which was marked by a stabbing, a rape, five fires and several assaults on police.

Thirty-nine officers from nearby departments pitched in to try to control the crowds. As he did in 2004, Ohio University President Roderick McDavis wrote to the parents of undergraduate students encouraging them to talk to their children about behaving properly Halloween weekend.

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