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Dalhousie homecoming parties shut down, 22 arrested

Halifax police arrested 22 people at a Dalhousie homecoming party on Saturday. Cory McGraw/Global News

Celebrations for homecoming week at Dalhousie University in Halifax got a little out of control this weekend — with nearly two dozen students arrested.

READ: Halifax police stepping up patrols around universities as students head back

Halifax Regional Police say they found out about some of the large homecoming events through social media.

By noon on Saturday, police ended up moving in after several parties moved from homes near the university to the street.

“There was in excess of 1,200 to 1,500 people coming out of the homes and onto the street,”said Sgt. Darla Perry, Halifax Regional Police.

READ: Dalhousie University issues warning after drinks allegedly spiked at party

Students who organized a party at their home on Chestnut Street say things escalated quickly.

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“People bought bracelets in advance and then a lot of people came at the door and a lot of people ended up showing up and we just had to shut it down,” said a fourth-year student at Dalhousie who asked not to be named.

According to students, one of the reasons that so many people showed up to Chestnut Street was because parties on nearby streets were shut down earlier in the day by police.

“That flooded to our place and then that got our place and that got out of control because obviously, we’re not going to deny people,” said a Dalhousie student.

READ MORE: Parents of student who died of alcohol poisoning sue Dalhousie University

In total, Perry says 22 arrests were made by Halifax police. Most of the violations were under the Liquor Control Act for public intoxication, drinking in public and open alcohol.

“There’s always a mixture of response and how police are treated and the interaction with people. It’s a lot of explaining the process, what happens and why we’re there and what their rights are,” added Sgt. Perry.

Dalhousie University president Richard Florizone commented on the homecoming parties on Twitter, saying he was “disappointed to hear that some students are drinking excessively and disturbing our community.”

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Dalhousie University president Richard Florizone commented on the homecoming parties on Twitter on Saturday afternoon.

WATCH: Halifax Regional Police launch Operation Fall-Back

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Halifax police roll out annual campaign to target noise, alcohol on campus – Sep 4, 2016

Surprisingly, Perry says it’s not that uncommon to see a party occur with that many students.

“For this time of year and those type of events that occur, it’s not,” she said. “I’ve been here for 25 years so we’ve had parties that large before. There wasn’t as many intoxicated people there that you would suspect from that amount of people.”

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