A Wilfrid Laurier University student in Waterloo, Ontario, is the latest to be charged in connection with the “fake” welcome party that drew thousands of people to the west end of Hamilton over the weekend.
Police say the 19-year-old from Burlington was arrested and faces a mischief charge of less than $ 5,000.
It is the eighth charge filed in connection with the “unauthorized” event in the Dalewood and Westwood area that had as many as 5,000 people in the area at its peak, according to investigators.
Hamilton Police Press Charges After McMaster University Welcome Party ‘Unauthorized’ And ‘Fake’
So far, the charges filed since Saturday have been for mischief, liquor license violations and breach of public order / causing riot.
Detectives say they’re still looking seven other suspects whose images were posted on the Hamilton Police website.
All seven face similar allegations after a car rolled over and property was damaged in the middle of the weekend meeting.
McMaster President David Farrar issued a statement and apology the next day, referring to the event as a “false homecoming.”
“McMaster students, and anyone else who chose to be part of the gathering of several thousand people in our community on Saturday, we owe our neighbors, our emergency workers and all other students an apology for the disruptions, the disrespect for property and contempt for those who live in our community, ”said Farrar.
Sean Van Koughnett, Associate Vice President and Dean of Students, told CHML 900 Good morning hamilton the school continues to work with Hamilton police and city law enforcement to identify persons of concern who participated in acts of mayhem.
“Much of the activity was just large groups of people around, but there were cases of property destruction,” Van Koughnett said.
“In particular, we are interested in that. The challenge is identifying the people in those videos so we can take the appropriate action. “
Van Koughnett earlier this week told Global News that McMaster officials saw “signs” that something was being planned through advice via social media.
He went on to say that not everyone involved was McMaster students and some likely came from other schools or weren’t students at all.
“We have people hiding behind social media accounts. Whether they are students or not, nobody knows, ”said Van Koughnett.
More participants are likely to face disciplinary action and charges following McMaster’s “ unauthorized ” return home
The executive says meetings are likely not something that can be prevented, but university staff hope to find ways to mitigate injuries and property damage in the future.
Kingston, London, Waterloo. Everyone has had years of these great street parties that continue and are hard to contain, ”said Van Koughnett.
“I don’t think there is any naivety in thinking that they can be prevented or that they will be avoided altogether. But when it comes to property or human health hazards, that’s where we worry. “
Previous attempts at activities on campus have failed in the past, largely due to the fact that alcohol is not served.
A potential deterrent in the future could be fencing and crowd control, according to Van Koughnett, as such measures exist in other university communities in Ontario.
The vice president believes that the excessive misbehavior observed at the event is not something that is endorsed by most of the university’s student body, but he is not sure it will discourage future street parties.
“Is it possible for this to become an annual event or not? I guess that will show, ”Van Koughnett said.
“We are going to work with the city and the police to figure out how to handle this in the future.”
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