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STATE COLLEGE (KDKA) — A low-flying helicopter caused some panic for tailgaters before the Penn State game Saturday.
People who were tailgating in the parking lot recorded the state police chopper on their phones as they buzzed the crowd. The wind was so strong, it sent cups, tents and even corn hole games flying.
State police say a large-scale party was getting out of hand and they feared for people’s safety.
First, they tried to break things up on the ground with police on horseback, but they say two horses were actually assaulted and a trooper injured.
That’s when police made the decision to pull back, hoping to de-escalate the situation.
Instead, they brought in a helicopter to use a loudspeaker to communicate with the crowd.
“A helicopter was utilized to issue commands to disperse via loudspeaker. When personnel on scene noticed the helicopter was low enough to disturb items on the ground, the helicopter pulled up to a higher altitude,” Pennsylvania State Police said in a statement.
Although people on social media have been critical of the state police effort after seeing videos online, Penn State University Police say after using the state police helicopter, the dangerous crowd behavior dissipated.