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Smashing Pumpkins: Quick Cleanup After Riot at New Hampshire College

 / Updated 
Image: Local police, firefighters and ambulances in New Hampshire responded to large crowds of students
Local police, firefighters and ambulances in New Hampshire responded to large crowds of students as the annual Pumpkin Festival is underway near Keene State College on Oct. 18. Media report several people have been injured in an apparent Saturday afternoon melee.Seth Meyer / AP

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Students at a New Hampshire college cleaned up on Sunday after an annual pumpkin festival turned into a riot, with property destroyed, dozens of people arrested and injured and police responding with pepper spray.

“It got way out of hand,” Mallory Pearce, vice president of the student body at Keene State College, told The Associated Press. “Everyone I talked to said, ‘I feel unsafe. I’m going home.’ They didn’t want to be part of the riot, and they couldn’t do anything to solve it. I honestly did not feel safe.”

Volunteers cleaned up the campus in less than an hour, but authorities were still sorting out what happened. At least 49 people were arrested from Friday through early Sunday, and New England Cable News reported that at least 30 were injured. Local TV stations showed crowds flipping a car, hurling glass bottles and fleeing clouds of tear gas.

The president of the college, Anne Huot, said Sunday that administrators were reviewing video and social media to determine who broke the law. She said serious offenders could be expelled.

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— Erin McClam

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