GREENSBORO, N.C. (WGHP) — Greensboro officers responding to a block party on Tuesday expected to find about 10 people. Instead, they found more than 1,000 interim Greensboro Police Chief Teresa Biffle said.

Biffle referenced the incident on Wednesday during a news conference about a separate shooting at an apartment complex on Circle Drive. That shooting left two people dead and four others hurt.

Officers responded at 12:42 a.m. to the large “block party” at the Province Apartments on Houston Street and were met by partygoers who reportedly threw large rocks at police property. Officers used pepper spray and tear gas to break up the crowd.

“The gathering that we had two nights ago, it was reported 10 people, and it ended up being well over 1,000, so please don’t hesitate to call,” Biffle said.

She encourages anyone who sees a gathering getting “out of hand” to contact law enforcement.

“We would rather know about something than have to show and use additional resources when something gets out of control,” Biffle said.

When officers arrived at the Houston Street scene, they found overcrowded apartments and a large crowd of people in the streets.

About a year ago, police responded to two similar incidents on Clifton Road where large parties overcrowded upper-level apartments causing structural damage and portions of the buildings to collapse with people inside. People who called Guilford Metro 911 about Tuesday night’s incident expressed the same concerns.

Additional resources were requested from all Greensboro patrol districts, the Guilford County Sheriff’s Office and any other law enforcement agency that could help move the large crowd. 

Soon after assisting units arrived, people threw bottles and large rocks at officers and their vehicles. 

  • Pepper spray, tear gas used to break up party in Greensboro after large rocks thrown at police vehicles, officers say (Greensboro Police Department)
  • Pepper spray, tear gas used to break up party in Greensboro after large rocks thrown at police vehicles, officers say (Greensboro Police Department)
  • Pepper spray, tear gas used to break up party in Greensboro after large rocks thrown at police vehicles, officers say (Greensboro Police Department)
  • Pepper spray, tear gas used to break up party in Greensboro after large rocks thrown at police vehicles, officers say (Greensboro Police Department)

Officers then used a pepper fogger spray, which is a larger handheld version of their personal pepper spray designed for use with multiple people, and a canister of CS gas, commonly known as tear gas.

The crowd broke up, and no injuries were reported. No arrests have been made.

The investigation is ongoing. 

The GPD’s Professional Standards Division will conduct an internal investigation to determine whether proper policies were followed regarding the use of force.