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A New Hampshire town’s Pumpkin Festival ended in violence as a riot broke out when people got more rowdy than usual.

Authorities had to use tear gas and pepper spray to breakup rowdy revelers that were throwing beer and liquor bottles during the 24th Annual Pumpkin Festival in Keene, New Hampshire on Saturday.

There’s no word on what sparked the rioting, but WMUR reports that matters quickly spiraled out of control as bonfires were set in the street. A number of ambulances also had to be called out as several people sustained injuries. A group of people even managed to flip a car during the chaos!

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CNN reports that dozens of arrests were made Saturday night as some people cussed out police and tore signs out of the street. “State and local public safety officials are on the scene and have been working closely together to defuse the situation,” Gov. Maggie Hassan said a statement issued Saturday night. “We will continue to monitor the situation and provide any assistance necessary to Keene.”

The main perpetrators are being described as students from Keene State College, but the school’s president believes that some people came from a few towns over just to join in on the mayhem. She said those people probably saw Keene “as a destination for destructive and raucous behavior.”

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Keene’s Pumpkin Festival has seen people getting way out of line before (the Keene Sentinel reports that 140 people were arrested last year). Amazingly all of the offenders managed to get away with their lives!

Had this gone down in an urban area, we’d be hard pressed to believe that there wouldn’t have been at least one shooting. As the tragic deaths of Michael Brown and Eric Garner have shown the nation, police are often much tougher when dealing with Black people—and they don’t have to be doing much to get gunned down or choked to death.

Meanwhile in Keene, college students are flipping over cars, charging police with dumpsters and setting fires, but there’s not one reported incident of police brutality. Must be nice. Apparently, the people in Keene will take any opportunity to turn a party into a riot; the Sentinel reports that last year, that Keene students were so excited about the Red Sox winning the world series that once again threw bottle and wreaked utter havoc. The most they had to worry about was pepper spray—not bullets.

Black Twitter also made the following observations:


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Riot Breaks Out At New Hampshire Pumpkin Festival & It Would Have Ended Differently In Any Urban Area  was originally published on