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Students celebrate Virginia’s weekend victories with minimal crime, vandalism

Both Final Four and national championship celebrations surrounding the University involved minimal crimes and arrests

The Charlottesville Fire Department responded to several instances of burning couches following Virginia's championship win Monday night.
The Charlottesville Fire Department responded to several instances of burning couches following Virginia's championship win Monday night.

After Virginia’s Final Four victory over Auburn Saturday and national championship win over Texas Tech Monday, the Charlottesville Police Department blocked off vehicular traffic on the Corner, on Elliewood Avenue and 14th Street from University Avenue to Wertland Street. 

The CPD had primary control over police operations on the Corner Saturday and Monday, while the University Police Department had officers at both the McIntire Amphitheatre and the Aquatic & Fitness Center, where the University hosted Final Four viewings

According to CPD Public Information Officer Tyler Hawn, all police operations surrounding the University were a joint effort between the CPD, UPD and the Virginia State Police, as well as other outside agencies. 

“You had large police presence on hand, and that’s just to ensure that students and fans, wherever they may be, especially in the Corner area, celebrating safely and responsibly,” Hawn said.

One University student was arrested by UPD officers for public intoxication at 1:42 a.m. Sunday morning on Culbreth road, according to Officer Benjamin Rexrode, community service and crime prevention coordinator for the UPD. No other arrests surrounding the University were made by the UPD, CPD or any other police departments and agencies Saturday and early Sunday.

According to Hawn, the CPD originally planned to keep University Avenue open to vehicular traffic after Saturday’s game. The department maintained the same goal for Monday evening, but had a plan in place to shut the road down if necessary. The CPD closed University Avenue to vehicular traffic again, however, as thousands of students and community members filled the streets after Virginia’s win. 

The CPD has some issues with open fires and drone usage Saturday night, Hawn said. A drone was reported flying in the University Hospital area after the game.

“Especially in the hospital area, drones are not recommended,” Hawn said. “They impact the flight path of Pegasus, which of course has crucial medevac equipment for the U.Va. hospital, so we’re asking that people not fly drones in the area of the U.Va. hospital.”

The Charlottesville Fire Department also responded to open fire reports of fireworks, flares and furniture fires Saturday.

Both the University and Charlottesville Police Departments are finalizing crime data from Monday night. According to Hawn, arrests were minimal and all crimes were low-level incidents.