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Boulder officials warn against St. Patrick’s Day parties after earlier riot

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Posted at 12:13 PM, Mar 16, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-16 20:36:35-04

BOULDER, Colo. — Authorities in Boulder are warning students against St. Patrick’s Day parties after the March 6 party-turned-riot that injured officers and damaged property.

Boulder Police Chief Maris Herold and University of Colorado Boulder Police Chief Doreen Jokerst are urging students to follow public health guidelines and avoid large gatherings on Wednesday, St. Patrick's Day.

Boulder County Public Health guidelines limits personal gatherings to no more than 10 people from two different households.

“If you choose to celebrate, we ask you to remember you are part of the community and your actions impact those around you. The Division of Students Affairs is hosting many great events now and throughout the weekend in the residence halls and across campus. There are both virtual and in-person options, all designed for you to safely have fun and get to know fellow Buffs,” read a joint statement from Chief Jokerst and Chief Herold.

Officials said officers will be patrolling University Hill and other campus neighborhoods to ensure the public health orders are followed and gatherings don’t get out of hand.

During a campus COVID-19 meeting Tuesday morning, chiefs for both CU Boulder police and the Boulder Police Department talked about their plan for Wednesday.

"We are fully staffed for a 24/7 cycle, including an undercover task force that will respond on the Hill for cost of service," said Herold.

Despite the urging from officials, some students say they believe gatherings and parties will still take place Wednesday.

"I wasn’t around for the riots but given the fact that we don’t have a spring break, it’s pretty frustrating. I’m assuming that people will still gather," said CU Boulder senior Jake Lawson. "I don’t think it’ll be anything compared to what Saint Patty‘s Day usually is, but there’s definitely going to be some parties."

Three officers were injured after they were struck with rocks and bricks after they responded to the March 6 gathering, according to police, and at least one car was damaged and flipped over. Police say an armored rescue vehicle and a fire truck sustained heavy damage, as well as other vehicles belonging to residents.

Monday, police announced the arrest of five more people in the University Hill riot in Boulder, and released two more videos — viewable here and here — and asked if anyone could identify the people seen in the footage.