College Station, AR – An unruly crowd launched fireworks at Pulaski County deputies and ambulances during a chaotic “fireworks war” on Thursday night (video below).
At least five people blew off hands and fingers during the incident, and 12 people were arrested, KARK reported.
“People were coming up to us with missing fingers and hands blown off,” the Pulaski County Sheriff’s Office (PCSO) said. “When we were trying to put tourniquets on someone that had missing fingers, they were throwing fireworks.”
PCSO Lieutenant Cody Burk said that as many as 300 people were gathered in the area when the chaos erupted, the Arkansas Democrat Gazette reported.
Two PCSO suffered minor burns during the mayhem.
“Oh [expletive] – that’s the police they’re shooting at,” a bystander said in a cell phone video that was later shared online.
Exploding fireworks were detonated near groups of people, and deputies walked calmly through the smoke as they tried to restore order, the video showed.
Fireworks were set off right in front of patrol vehicles, and many exploded within feet of the deputies.
As one deputy was taking a man into custody, a woman suddenly began screaming for everyone to “watch out!”
Smoke filled the air as people ran for cover amid the sirens and explosions.
As two deputies took off running after a fleeing suspect, another firework exploded in the opposite direction.
There were so many fireworks being shot at police and ambulances that first responders could no longer drive into the area, Lt. Burk told the Arkansas Democrat Gazette.
As a result, deputies had to rush people with missing fingers and hands to medics who were staged blocks away.
Deputies arrested a dozen people on a myriad of charges ranging from aggravated assault and assault on a peace office officer to fleeing and drug possession, KARK reported.
College Station residents claimed that a majority of the people who were participating in the “fireworks war” were teens from outside the area.
You can watch footage of some of the attacks on first responders in the video below: