Police are still trying to assess the damage to businesses on Pearl Street and identify participants for possible prosecution after about 1,000 people descended on downtown Boulder Friday night in an apparent effort to revive the Pearl Street Mall Crawl.
Boulder police said a crowd of roughly 200 people first began developing about 9:30 p.m. Friday in the 1100 block of Pearl Street. The crowd had grown to about 1,000 by 11 p.m., with some participants hanging from light poles and trees, accessing rooftops and causing property damage.
Police said at least some of the people gathered were responding to social media posts attempting to revive the Pearl Street Mall Crawl, a Halloween tradition that businesses and city officials largely killed off a decade ago due to safety and property damage concerns.
The Barstool Buffs Instagram account, which was also credited by at least one other social media post as promoting the event, posted on Friday “We are 5 hours away from the return of the Pearl Street Mall Crawl – see you between 9:30 and 10.”
Then on Saturday, the Barstool Twitter account sent out a post that read, “ICYMI: We brought back the Pearl Street Mall Crawl last night.”
— Barstool Colorado (@CUBarstool) October 30, 2021
Boulder police spokeswoman Dionne Waugh confirmed Monday that city did not issue permits for any such event. When asked if police would be looking into the organizers of the event, Waugh said, “We are looking at all aspects of what occurred as we investigate this incident.”
In addition to the health concerns surrounding a large gathering during a pandemic, police said the event led to damage to business property in the area, including damage to windows, patio furniture and heat lamps.
Waugh said police do not have a damage total estimate, as police are still waiting on other possible reports of damages.
Any businesses that suffered damage during the incident are asked to call 303-441-3333 to make a report.
Police said drones were deployed to capture footage that could lead to criminal charges.
“Community safety is the top priority for the District Attorney’s Office,” Boulder County District Attorney Michael Dougherty said in a statement. “If law enforcement is able to identify and arrest the individuals involved in damaging property, our office will fight for the right outcome in those cases. There are consequences for one’s actions.”