OCEAN CITY, Md. — An unsanctioned car race created an "enormous disturbance" to Ocean City residents and visitors over the weekend.
Officials say car enthusiasts of the New Jersey based H2Oi group have been in town all weekend, and at times have gotten into showdowns with police.
Just after 4:30 p.m. Saturday, it all came to a head when a large group hurled rocks, bottles, and other objects at police in the area of 13th Street.
Some officers sustained minor injuries but luckily none had to be hospitalized.
According to Ocean City Police Department spokeswoman Ashley Miller, there have been "quite a few" arrests made over the weekend related to the disturbances.
"This group [H2oi] has caused an enormous disturbance not only to our resident's and visitor's but also to our police officers and allied agencies working to keep our community safe," said Miller.
H2oi doesn't have a permit for any in town event, but this weekend the city was designated a Special Events Zone, which included reduced speed limits and an increased number of officers patrolling the area.
In a statement released through his Facebook page, Ocean City Mayor Rick Meehan said the town would take action to prevent the group from ever returning;
“What took place this past weekend in Ocean City can never happen again. This group came to town with the sole purpose to raise havoc in our community, to disrupt our lives and defy law enforcement. They placed our town, as well as our citizens and visitors. under siege and in danger which is unacceptable under any circumstances. Our town government, citizens, property owners and businesses must join together as one voice to take whatever action is necessary to stop this group from returning. This isn’t about just one weekend this is about our future." said Meehan.
Meehan went on to praise area law enforcement and their efforts to contain the incident and keep everyone safe;
"I cannot say enough about the men and women of the Ocean City Police Department, the Worcester County Sheriff’s Office, the Maryland State Police, Maryland Natural Resources Police, Maryland Transportation Police and the other allied agencies that were here this weekend. They went far beyond the call of duty in their attempts to enforce the law and to protect our community while at the same time placing themselves in harm’s way," Meehan said.
The Mayor also said he plans to speak with Maryland Governor Larry Hogan to ask for the State's help;
"The Mayor and City Council must immediately begin working with Police Chief Buzzuro, City Manager Doug Miller and State Agencies to put a plan in place to stop this chaos. All potential actions should be considered. This includes, but should not be limited to, declaring a State of Emergency. I plan to speak with the Governor this week to discuss this in detail and ask for his assistance."
Miller says the police department will release further information and updated arrest numbers on the incident early this upcoming week.