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Deltopia: Day Rager Turnt Down For Riot

(Image from SB Fire Department)

Deltopia is an unofficial annual holiday celebrated in Isla Vista the first weekend of spring quarter. Despite this years noise ordanance and flashy in-your-face survaillence cameras, the event still brought in an estimated number of 25,000 visitors, 1,000 more people than last year.

(Image from Noozhawk)

(Image from Independant)

What began as Isla Vista’s favorite springtime day rager (formerly known as Floatopia), ended climatically with what the Santa Barbara City Sheriff Department calls “civil unrest,” or a riot.

(Image from University Herald)

On Saturday evening at approximately 9:30pm Desmond Louis Edwards, a 17-year-old visiting from Los Angeles, hit a campus officer in the face with a backpack carrying alcohol bottles when the officer attempted to break up a party at the 67 block of Del Playa. Crowds formed, law enforcement declared it an “unlawful assembly,” and soon thereafter all hell broke loose.

According to Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Department spokeswoman Kelly Hoover, at least six officers were injured by bottles, rocks and bricks that were thrown.

In an effort to control the riot, deputies and officers shot tear gas and rubber bullets into crowds while repeating “you are unlawful” into a megaphone. Witnesses who were on balconies but not participating in the riot were also shot and the effects of the tear gas caused excessive coughing, red and itchy eyes, runny noses and nose bleeds.

(Images from Daily Nexus)

About 100 people were arrested and 44 people were transported to the hospital for injuries. There were no deaths.

That evening, UCSB sent an emergency notification to students:

(Image from Ktey)

According to Hoover, visitors caused much of the disturbance.

“You can’t say that the locals are innocent in all of this, but we do find that Isla Vista attracts people from out of town to come in,” Hoover said. “They’re not invested in our community and they’re attracted by the atmosphere.”

Data from the UCSB Police Department and Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office confirm that out of 412 arrests and citations, 91 percent were not affiliated with UCSB.

(Image from Daily Nexus)

AS President Jonathan Abboud and AS Vice President Kyley Scarlet sent an email to students on behalf of Associated Students to discuss the incident and to offer solutions so that these events aren’t repeated.

Here are some highlights:

  • Yes, it is true that much of the crime that happens here is connected to out-of-towners, but who invites these people into our town? We do.
  • Deltopia was created by us and sustained by us, if we want it to continue it is up to us to control the direction of it, and Isla Vista as a whole.
  • It is perfectly ok to celebrate holidays such as Deltopia.
  • This riot was our wake up call. We need to band together and extinguish the party image… Let’s take responsibility for this.

(Image from Daily Nexus)

Deltopia is the most fun weekend of spring quarter, but it will no longer exist unless we change this legacy of party fouls.

Stay classy, Santa Barbara.

Mya McCann is a fourth year literature student in the College of Creative Studies at UCSB. She currently lives in Bangkok, Thailand and is in the business of running BKK. On the weekends you can find Mya either in the jungle or on an island. On the weekdays she studies Thai and Buddhism and teaches English to sex workers in the red light district. You can follow her adventures on IG: MyaJoy
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