URI students arrested during Patriots celebration


KINGSTON, R.I. (WPRI) — Celebrations were mostly peaceful across Southern New England after the Patriots’ 28-24 win over the Seattle Seahawks, but things got a little out of hand on the University of Rhode Island campus in South Kingstown.

A video sent to Eyewitness News by a URI student showed at least one person being taken to the ground by police.

In the video, people are seen breaking street lights and destroying campus property.

As soon as the game ended, about 800 students poured out of residence halls to celebrate. The vast majority of them were simply cheering for the Patriots, but six of them were arrested on charges including simple assault, disorderly conduct and vandalism.

“All the students ran outside, cheering, celebrating, cheering ‘go Pats.’ Unfortunately, what started out as a celebration quickly became destructive,” the student who submitted the video said.

In the video, you can see people shooting off fireworks, then snowballs start flying – taking out several lights – and one student ripped out a sign post.

“Most people were just bystanders, but maybe it was a classic case of mob mentality,” the student added.

A spokesperson for the university said four students were arrested by URI police and two by South Kingstown police. The dean of students released a statement Monday, saying “the actions of a few members of the group are deplorable. I assure you that those found to be culpable by the criminal justice process and our own student conduct process will face severe consequences.”

Police confirmed that several officers suffered minor injuries during the ordeal.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.


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