ORONO, Maine (NEWS CENTER)-- Officials are looking into a string of rowdy parties at an off-campus apartment complex in Orono. The Grove apartments near University of Maine has been the site of three large and out of control parties that left damaged property, upset neighbors, and concerned police.
Sgt. Scott Lajoie said, "This isn't your typical large party, we are used to that and can handle that. This is more of a mass gathering where we are talking several hundred people at one time. A lot of times they are intoxicated and not willing to move along and leave when asked to leave."
One of the parties had more than 300 attendees causing Orono police to request back-up from other agencies.
Sgt. Lajoie said, "The number one priority is safety. Safety of our officers involved and safety of all the people in this crowd or in the area. So when you are looking at a crowd of 300 people and you have someone throwing beer bottles at us, chanting, and not willing to comply with what we are asking them to do then you worry about people getting hurt. That's not a situation where you are going to send in four or five officers. You need to call in for help."
According to police, the block parties occur around the same area each time, but due to the massive size and disorder of the crowd it is difficult to figure out who is responsible. Nearby neighbors voiced concerns about the loud noise and damage to property, but other students living in The Grove are also concerned.
"There are a lot of people there that aren't the troublemakers or causing the problems. When we show up, and if they are part of the group, they just leave. Or they actually call because they are trying to get some studying done or some sleep at night. It's a few people that are causing the problem and really ruining it for everybody," said Sgt. Lajoie.
According to police, most attendees are notified by a massive text message shortly before the party and are not necessarily all students.
The corporate owners of The Grove have decided to hire the Orono police department and other agencies to add extra details around the complex.
Police will be patrolling the area throughout the weekend in hopes of keeping other rowdy gatherings from happening again.