Riot Near University of Colorado Boulder Leads to Clash with Police

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Photo of a police car with the siren lights lit up.

On March 6, violence erupted at a large college party that turned into a riot near the University of Colorado (CU) Boulder after a mob attacked law enforcement, leading to the injury of three SWAT officers. An estimated 800 people were in attendance at the height of the event, with most not wearing facial masks or social distancing.

Social media videos of the melee, which has been coined the “#BoulderRiot,” show attendees damaging vehicles, shooting fireworks, brawling, and chasing after law enforcement vehicles. Now, Boulder police officials are reviewing body camera footage and looking to arrest any individuals who committed a crime during the event, the department announced on Sunday.


CU also released a statement saying students involved will face disciplinary action. 

“Any student who is found responsible for having engaged in acts of violence or other egregious acts connected to the events will face serious sanctions up to expulsion from CU Boulder, and may also face criminal and civil sanctions,” CU Chancellor Philip P. DiStefano stated.

The incident took place in the University Hill neighborhood, which has several bars and is the location of many fraternities and sorority houses.

Brynn Umansky, a junior at CU who lives in the University Hill neighborhood, told The New York Times that “as soon as it turned dark, it turned into a whole mob and it literally kept growing over the night until the cops came.”

“It was really scary and awful and the police didn’t do anything for hours,” Umansky said. “It was a lot, especially living right here and seeing all of it and not being able to do anything about it.”