Boulder resident reacts to reported mass gathering on Saturday night

A man who knows a University of Colorado Boulder student who witnessed the mass gathering reported Saturday described his reaction to the chaos that unfolded. Meanwhile, Boulder authorities worked to respond to the reported large party at Pennsylvania Avenue and 10th Street.


A mass gathering of people on 10th Street surrounding what appears to be a tipped-over car is shown. Jonathan Sackheim, who lives in Boulder, shared this photo from someone he says is a CU Boulder student and a witness. (Jonathan Sackheim / Courtesy Photo)

“I’m astonished that this party got so out of hand, including destroying a car,” said Jonathan Sackheim, a CU Boulder alumni and lifelong Boulder resident. “Apparently the SWAT team is on the scene. It’s just astounding that there is no specific cause to this riot: There’s no big football game win. I’m shocked by it.”

A reporter at the scene also reported seeing SWAT respond.

Sackheim lives in south Boulder and said while he didn’t witness the gathering himself, he was in touch with a student who described to him what they were seeing. The student told Sackheim that they watched the gathering of people turn over a parked car on 10th Street. The student told Sackheim that the car was turned on its side and that the windows were smashed in.

In a tweet, CU Boulder police said that people “could be subject to arrest and CU sanctions.”

Boulder police reported just before 9:30 p.m. that the crowds had dispersed. “There is no need to board up any businesses #Boulder,” they tweeted.

Social media posts circulating Saturday night also claimed to bear witness to the crowds. In response to some of those posts, Boulder police said they are “aware of what’s going on and have been developing a strategy response.”

The reported mass gathering falls just a day after Gov. Jared Polis hosted a memorial ceremony Friday to commemorate the nearly 6,000 Coloradans who’ve died from the coronavirus throughout the state’s one-year battle with the pandemic.

Hearing about the crowd and that many were not wearing masks “adds insult to injury,” Sackheim said.

“Of course, I’m worried about the property damage and that it could be a big coronavirus spreading event,” he said.

This is a developing story.

Boulder resident reacts to reported mass gathering on Saturday night