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Police in riot gear during St Patrick's Day celebration; UD President addresses students

3-17 ud riot gear.jpg

UPDATE - The student body of the University of Dayton recieved an email on Sunday morning from School President Eric Spina, expressing his disappointment in the students who ignored police orders during St. Patrick's Day celebrations.

In his message, which outlined exactly what happened during the incident in the area around Lowes Street, the University President called the students' behavior "absolutely unacceptable," going on to say, "as is the distorted sense of community that encourages and enables it."

Spina said students assaulted officers, shot fireworks into crowds, and ultimately "put themselves and their friends in danger."

He acknowledged that not all students were involved, saying he applauded those who acted responsibly.

While many UD students were not involved in this situation — and I applaud all of you who stayed away, acted responsibly, or dispersed when asked to — I am disappointed and concerned about those students who created and sustained this harmful environment.

Spina closed out the email reminding students of the expectations the university holds them to.

Our expectations for all members of the University of Dayton community remain the same: act responsibly, treat yourself and others with respect, follow the law, and build community in generative -- not destructive -- ways.


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DAYTON -- Police in riot gear on the UD campus on Saturday night and they were there several hours.

University of Dayton officials said a large crowd was throwing objects at police causing officers to present a show of force

By ten p.m., not many officers were left, though it was a couple of hours before they left.

Earlier, around 1,000 students were out there celebrating St. Patrick's Day.

That's when things got out of control.

University officials said a little earlier a large crowd was blocking the street and throwing things at police.

Some students weren't responding to police commands and created what school officials called an "extremely dangerous situation."

U.D. and Dayton Police were in riot gear walking from Evanston Street to Lowes Street on the U.D. campus.

"I just walked down to the corner of Evanston and Lowes. They had their shields up, obviously that's safe for them because there's a lot of people out and they just want to keep it safe," said U.D. Junior Donovan Haas.

It was show of force to the students there.

"They said go back to your houses. Lock your doors, lock your windows. That was repeated over and over again," said U.D. Junior Kevin O'Donnell.

School officials said when police orders to clear the street were ignored, officers withdrew for safety reasons.

Around 6:30 they went back with reinforcement, more officers.

Again they told the students to clear the street

Some students ignored the officers.

Police told students they would be arrested for not obeying their commands.

"It made me feel more unsafe than I was in my normal aspect. I don't know why I'd have to lock my windows, like we don't keep our windows locked to be honest at home," said O'Donnell.

Students cleared the street, some peered out their windows while officers stood in front of each house.

"They were fine, it was like a little intimidating but they weren't doing anything out of their right. They were just standing there, so," said O'Donnell.

Around 8 o'clock some police officers left the campus while others stayed behind.

"I just thought they were making their presence known and of course the street cleared out after they made their presence known so they did their job peacefully and nobody was hurt," said Haas.

U.D. officials said a strong police presence will be in the student neighborhood through Sunday, and if a similar crowd gathers, it will be ordered to disperse.

Officials said no one was arrested.

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