Fight sparked with U students

By Matt Day

A fight between University of Minnesota (U of M) and Macalester students in the Campus Center on Saturday, Feb. 11 left two Macalester students with minor cuts and bruises, though no one was seriously injured. The fight occurred about twenty minutes after a dance in the Campus Center hosted by Macalester’s Black Liberation Affairs Committee (BLAC) and the Program Board. BLAC invited groups from the U of M to perform a step exhibition at the beginning of the dance.

A Macalester student involved in the fight said it began when he and a group of female U of M students bumped into each other and exchanged insults. The short conversation took place as the dance crowd was leaving the Campus Center.

Eyewitnesses said several male U of M students approached a Macalester student between the Campus Center’s two sets of entrance doors. The outnumbered student retreated into the building.

A second Macalester student approached the U of M students with palms raised to calm the situation but was hit in the face.

At least two more Macalester students ran toward the fray.

The clash ended after a few seconds when the U of M students ran out of the Campus Center. Witnesses saw the group leaving campus running west on Grand Avenue.

According to Kate Heidinger ’07, Campus Center Building Manager on the night of the fight, the security personnel assigned to the dance never reported to work.

Terry Gorman, Safety and Security Officer, said he called the absence of requested security a “big concern.”

Heidinger called security to help her clear out the building at the end of the dance. The campus security guard on duty responded and was present at the time of the fight.

“We haven’t got a clear answer as to why no one showed up,” Gorman said of the two officers assigned to the dance.

The St. Paul police were not notified. Gorman said that police are usually not called to resolve fights on campus because their presence escalates situations, often ending in arrests.

The Dean of Students office is investigating the incident.