Hamilton, Ottawa police make arrests after unsanctioned weekend homecoming parties

Hundreds of people congregate on a street near McMaster University last year on Oct. 2, 2021. Global News

Police in Hamilton and Ottawa say more than a dozen people were arrested when unsanctioned homecoming street parties broke out around university campuses after football games this weekend.

Hamilton police say nine people were arrested and 16 bylaw charges were issued after they estimate up to 6,000 people gathered in the Westdale and Ainslie Woods neighbourhoods near McMaster University on Saturday.

A police spokesperson says students were respectful and co-operative when officers cleared Dalewood Avenue starting shortly after 5 p.m., but later there were reports of fights among attendees and bottles thrown at police when they cleared Gary Avenue around 9:30 p.m.

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The university, which stopped hosting official homecoming events after 2019, thanked student volunteers for returning the next day to help collect trash in the neighbourhood.

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In Ottawa, police say a large crowd gathered along Somerset Street near the University of Ottawa after the homecoming football game against Carleton University on Saturday.

Ottawa police say 102 tickets for open alcohol were issued and seven people were arrested, including for public intoxication and mischief, after police claim “many people in the crowd became belligerent and hostile.”

It comes a week after police in London, Ont., say more than 150 warnings were issued and one person was charged with assaulting an officer following an unsanctioned street event in the wake of Western University’s homecoming football game.

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