When students head out to sunny locations to party over spring break, a bit of chaos is to be expected. But some of this year’s spring break has been partying a little too hard, turning fun in the sun into utter chaos.
From Miami to Cabo San Lucas, the week-long festivities were marred by fight clubs, shootings, celebrity muggings and even the tragic deaths of a few revelers.
The most publicized victim of this year’s spring break pandemonium was Def Leppard drummer Rick Allen, who was allegedly attacked by 19-year-old Max Hartley at the Four Seasons Hotel in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, according to The Miami Herald.
Hartley, who a 911 caller said was “very heavily intoxicated”, allegedly rushed Allen at full speed while the musician smoked a cigarette, knocking the 59-year-old over and hitting his head. When a woman approached to help Allen, Hartley also allegedly knocked her down, then dragged her to the back of the hotel to prevent her from escaping.
Hartley’s attorney, Sam Halpern, refuted the allegations, calling his client an “extremely nice young man” who has “never been in trouble with the law before”.
Meanwhile, a violent incident in Miami’s South Beach on Friday night turned deadly when a shooting tragically interrupted St. Patrick’s Day festivities.
Miami Beach police have arrested a man after an explosion of violence at a busy intersection that adjoins Miami’s palm-lined beach left one dead and another seriously injured.
Police have not identified the victims, but they have a suspect in custody who is “fully cooperating with the investigation”, according to police.
Even police officers were not immune to the spring break violence, with an officer assaulted by a college basketball player Wednesday at Fort Lauderdale’s popular Rock Bar, authorities say.
De’Sean Allen-Eikens, a 22-year-old student at California State University, Northridge, allegedly got into an altercation with a bouncer at the busy bar, which ended with the 6ft 6in attacker throwing down floor.
When police were called, a Fort Lauderdale cop tried to calm Allen-Eikens down, but he was instead punched in the face for his trouble, according to police body camera footage.
Allen-Eikens, who was seen handcuffed with a bloody nose after the encounter, now faces charges including assault and battery against a law enforcement officer.
Between those outbreaks, revelers claim to have seen impromptu fight clubs breaking out on crowded South Florida beaches, according to NewsNation. One included women and fraternity brothers brawling in the sands of Fort Lauderdale, much to the excitement of cheering crowds, the Daily mail.
Yet some of the most tragic events of the season were not caused by violence, but by terrifying accidents.
Liza Burke, a senior at the University of Georgia in North Carolina, was having breakfast in the Mexican resort town of Cabo San Lucas when she complained of a headache and eventually became unresponsive.
Burke was eventually hospitalized with a brain hemorrhage and airlifted to a hospital in Jacksonville, Florida, where she underwent surgery.
Although Burke was reunited with her family after her horrific medical ordeal, a student from New Jersey was not so lucky.
Henry Meacock, who is studying finance at Ohio State University, was confirmed dead while on spring break in a heartbreaking Instagram post from his sister. The cause of his sudden death remains unclear.
“You are an extremely special soul who will live forever. The most handsome boy inside and out. No one will ever have a smile like yours,” Ellie Meacock wrote.
Given the potential risks, experts and health officials are urging caution during spring break festivities.