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Greensboro police responded to a report of several fights that broke out at a UNCG gym jam at approximately 10:00 pm on March 17.
“There was a lot of overcrowding, pushing and shoving that eventually erupted into several large fights,” said Paul Lester, UNCG Chief of Police. “UNCG Police were already on the scene working the event along with event staff.”
UNCG Police requested the assistance of the Greensboro Police Department with breaking up the large event on UNCG’s campus, at 1408 Walker Ave. As UNCG officers started dispersing the crowd, several large fights broke out resulting in injuries and damage to property.
“Two people were injured,” said Chief Lester. “One suffered significant injury and the other suffered a minor injury. Damage was minimal. Some crash bars were broken on the doors and a glass was broken on a fire extinguisher case.”
Over 50 responding GPD officers arrived and discovered a crowd of more than 2,500 people gathered on Walker Avenue and in the gym as a result of the large number of people fighting, according a to spokesperson from the GPD.
“The investigation is still ongoing, but we are making progress,” UNCG’s Chief Lester said. “We are hoping that some charges do develop.”
Following the incident, both UNCG and NC A&T students posted hostile tweets online about who they believed started the fights at UNCG.
“Apparently there was tension on social media between A&T students and UNCG students due to the fact that apparently UNCG students think they are better than A&T students or apparently UNCG students accused A&T students of being the cause for the unfortunate events that weekend, I don’t know,” said Brittany Hudson, UNCG student body president. “Once again, this is all on social media and I would like to say it does not reflect my views or the views and values of our institution. Personally, the madness that took place on social media was pure ignorance and at the end of the day we need to come together as a community and tackle these issues head on as one. There is way too much going on in today’s society for us to be divided or for us to be fighting each other, physically and verbally.”
UNCG student leaders along with A&T student leaders held a nonviolence panel to combat any existing friction between the two universities.
“I think the purpose of the panel was to bridge the gap between the universities,” said Christian White, NC A&T’s vice-president of internal affairs. “If there is any tension between the two, the panel was used to disassociate each school with hate for each other.”
“With the increase in violence on college campuses, the purpose of the panel was to discuss that issue,” said Hudson. “We wanted everyone to have a better understanding of the negative impact violence has on the community. We wanted to create a safe space for students to express their concerns or suggestions to combat this issue. Our goal was to work toward possible solutions to decrease the violence and increase lines of communication between students and administrators. By the end we wanted everyone to take a pledge of non-violence for one year.”
UNCG Police are working to ensure a safe campus and that students feel safe on their campus.
“We are doing what we always do,” said Chief Lester. “We are making sure that we are highly visible on campus. When this event occurred, we were able to secure the area in a short time period, disperse the crowds and return the campus to normal in about 30-45 minutes with assistance from Greensboro Police. We were able help move traffic and move everyone out of the area. There was a significant amount of police present at the scene. We are always seeking information from students. If you have any further information about this particular event of any other events, we would love to hear from you.” !