Morgantown Police forced to deploy tear gas to break up Sunnyside party

MORGANTOWN – Charges have been filed against ten people in Morgantown, accused of throwing beer bottles, cans and other debris at police officers tying to break up a large party that shutdown Beverly Avenue.

Earlier this week, West Virginia University announced it was extending spring break for a week and suspending all in-person classes for the rest of the semester as a precaution to spreading the novel coronavirus, COVID-19.

Officers responded to the Sunnyside area between 4th and 6th Streets Thursday at 5:46 p.m. where a large crowd had a gathered, blocking the street. People could be seen standing on rooftops consuming alcohol in the streets. Officers first attempted to go door to door, speaking with individuals and urging them to leave the area. However, officers reported several individuals began throwing debris and officers retreated.

“The officers were assaulted, pelted with beer bottles, beer cans and rocks,” said Morgantown Police Chief Ed Preston.

Police attempted to disperse the crowd with a Public Address System but the crowd continued throwing objects toward officers. After warnings to disperse were ignored, officers deployed smoke grenades to break up the crowd.

“The crowd did not responded to the smoke warning and as a result the officers at the scene discharged three rounds of tear gas and following the discharge of the tear gas the street was cleared relatively quickly.”

Fire personnel and EMS were staged nearby in case of any injuries, although no injuries were reported.

“Mostly it was made up of individuals between ages 18 and 30, what you would consider student-aged,” described Preston.

Staff will be reviewing body camera video, surveillance video and reviewing reports of actions, which could result in more charges being filed. The Morgantown Police Department will also review for compliance with policy, training and compliance with all local, state and federal regulations.

Preliminary review has resulted in charges against ten people:

Connor BUROW, 21 years of age of Fairfax, VA, was charged with a Nuisance Party and Failure to Maintain a litter free premise.

Colin McHUGH, 19 years of age of Pilesgrove, NJ, was charged with Disorderly Conduct and Underage Consumption.

Joseph BOGGS, 27 years of age of Morgantown, was charged with Public Intoxication.

Syndenee WUNTS, 21 years of age of Morgantown, was charged with a Nuisance Party.

Sarah HOGAN, 21 years of age of Woodbridge, VA, was charged with a Nuisance Party.

Jakob GOSHEN, 20 years of age of Bloomsbury, NJ, was charged with Obstruction, Disorderly Conduct, Public Intoxication, and Underage Possession and Consumption.

Cameron PIERCE, 20 years of age of Weirton, WV, was charged with Public Intoxication, Underage Consumption and Disorderly Conduct.
Cole CAILOR, 19 years of age of Beaver Falls, PA, was charged with Public Intoxication, Underage Consumption and Disorderly Conduct and Destruction of Property.

Connor BUROW, 21 years of age of Fairfax, VA, was charged following a second encounter with officer for Public Intoxication.

Joshua LOVE, 21 years of age of Fairfax, VA, was charged with a Nuisance Party and Failure to Maintain a litter free premise.





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