One person has been charged with disorderly conduct after a mob on 18th Street near Arlington led to an Owl Loop bus nearly being flipped.
Deputy Director of Campus Safety Services Charlie Leone said that at around 1:30 a.m. on Sunday, Aug. 26, two Temple police bike officers were flagged down while they were patrolling on the 1600 block of Berks Street and told that a large group was trying to flip a Temple shuttle bus at 18th and Arlington streets.
Leone said that officers dispersed the crowd and a 19-or-20-year-old man from another university was arrested for disorderly conduct.
He said that the bus wasn’t damaged and the three people on the bus, the driver and two students, were shaken up, but weren’t injured.
“On the bus, there was the driver who’s OK — shaken up, but OK — and two students who were OK so there were no injuries, but nonetheless they’re sitting on a bus that’s getting rocked, that can’t be good,” Leone said.
Leone said that for a short period of time after the incident, traffic was curtailed from the area until the crowd was completely broken up.
Some on the block, like Jeremy Morales, estimated that upwards of 150 people were on the street at the time of the incident.
Morales was in his 18th Street apartment with his roommate when the noise from the disturbance drew him outside as the crowd grew larger. He said the people in the street allowed cars to pass through at first, before an Owl Loop bus was blocked in the middle of the street.
“When the bus came through, people were blocking it,” Morales, a junior sports and recreation management major, said. “Someone tried pushing it, then people started trying to tip it.”
Morales said the attempt to tip the bus lasted two to three minutes, and was ultimately unsuccessful as Temple Police eventually showed up and the crowd dispersed.
A spokesman for Philly Transportation, LLC, who runs Temple’s shuttle buses, declined comment other than to say that there are “student behavior issues that have to be looked at.”
Patrols will be paying more attention to this “problematic” area near 18th and 19th streets, Leone said. He also said that the university has seen an elevated number of alcohol-related issues with students from other universities at Temple.
“Probably about a third of the people we’re getting involved with alcohol-related stuff are people from other universities,” Leone said. “So, we got our students that we’re contending with, but now because it’s becoming more of a party area with students living in housing outside the campus.”
Videos of the incident surfaced last week and Leone said that they are viewing videos and pictures to identify those involved.
Sean Carlin and Joey Cranney can be reached at email@example.com.