A tossed ketchup bottle turned the seaside Orange County city of Huntington Beach, Calif. into a horde of rioters over the past weekend. Those involved are now being arrested, including a local firefighter, reports the Inquisitr on July 31.
On Sunday, fights and violence broke out shortly after the annual U.S. Open of Surfing. The two-hour confrontation that followed between local police and uncontrollable beachgoers ended with injuries, tear gas, rubber bullets being fired and multiple arrests.
Storefronts, city signs and vehicles sustained heavy damage. Windows were shattered and some looting was evident. Videos showed gangs of riotous people rocking cars and knocking over portable toilets, spilling sewage into the streets.
Kyle Calder, a witness at the scene, said fighting erupted after a ketchup bottle was tossed by a young person out of a second story restaurant.
“That’s when the cops came and everything went mayhem from there,” Calder said.
Among those arrested was 30-year-old Michael John Lytle, an Anaheim resident and a city firefighter. According to the Inquisitr, Lytle was arrested under “suspicion of disorderly conduct and resisting arrest.” Lytle has been placed on paid leave pending investigation into his actions.
Six others were arrested in connection with the weekend rioting. Police said additional arrests are pending as they continue to study the numerous photos and videos that were taken as thousands of people crowded the streets. An estimated 100,000 people were on hand over the weekend.
At a town hall forum Tuesday evening, Huntington Beach Police Chief Ken Small said “an incredible amount of restraint” was used by police officers in dealing with the crowd.
“I can’t tell you how many bottles of hot sauce were thrown at us,” Small said.
The Inquisitr lists those arrested thus far as Chase Scott Christman, 19, of Simi Valley; Andres Gomez, 24, of Huntington Beach; Michael Anthony Avila, 28, of Santa Ana; Joseph Monterrosa, 28, of Ontario; Adam A. Cecot, 18, of Irvine and Kyle Roger Crott, 18, of Riverside.