By Brix Fowler, Multimedia Journalist - bio | email
Police were called out to Worlds of Fun after a group of people got out of control. The disturbance all started a little before 9 p.m. Saturday. (Courtney Bachelor via Twitter)
KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -
Police were called out to Worlds of Fun after a group of people got out of control.
When people come to the amusement park, what they are expecting is family-friendly entertainment. So when a huge fight broke out Saturday night, it had some of them scared for their families' safety.
Amusement park officials said security officers, along with Kansas City police, responded about 9 p.m. Saturday to a report of a small group of "unruly teens" inside the park.
Officer Darin Snapp, a Kansas City police spokesman, said it was a shoving match between two girls causing a large group to gather.
"My youngest daughter yelled, 'Fight!'" said Mission resident Michael Rather, who never had a problem taking his family to Worlds of Fun until Saturday night. "I looked around, and sure enough, I saw two girls fighting."
Other teens gathered to watch.
"Security tried to break it up, but he was having a hard time getting in between the girls. So I ran over and pulled one of the girls off," he recalled.
After helping break it up, he noticed the situation escalating. He was worried about more brawls so he wanted to get his children out of the park as quickly as possible.
"Crowds were just starting to gather, it wasn't looking like a good situation. I grabbed my girls and started leaving the park," he said. All the way out to Oceans of Fun there's security running full speed back to where we were leaving from."
Some witnesses said the crowd reached at least 100 people.
Tim Reardon was at the park with his 10-year-old daughter. They were on their way to Snoopy World, located towards the back of the park, when they saw huge throngs of young teens and as many as 10 security officers running towards the front of the park.
"As we passed by the group, we saw one young black male being escorted by security in handcuffs - walking normally and not appearing to resist," Reardon said.
Reardon said he was momentarily nervous for his daughter as the groups passing them grew larger and more boisterous.
"I heard some of the kids shouting unpleasantries and disappointment with the attractions being closed and, of course, a few profanities but nothing out of line with what you would encounter at any other public attraction these days, like a Chiefs game or a movie theatre on a weekend night," he said.
Raether said Worlds of Fun did a great job of getting the situation under control.
"They had more security than I even realized. Once I realized what was going on, they were coming from all directions," he said.
Several teens were ejected from the park. There were no reports of arrests or injuries.
"Safety is our No. 1 priority and, as part of our normal operating procedures, we do employ off-duty Kansas City police officers and Clay County sheriff's deputies," Worlds of Fun spokeswoman Rachael Murie said in a written statement.
However, despite the fight, Raether says he's not going to stop bringing his family to either Worlds of Fun or Oceans of Fun but he won't stay after 5 p.m.
KCTV5's Jonathan Carter and DeAnn Smith contributed to this report.
Copyright 2014 KCTV (Meredith Corp.) All rights reserved.
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