MASON — Six people, including five juveniles and one adult, have been charged in connection to multiple fights at Kings Island last weekend that prompted the park to close early.
The charges range from felony inducing panic to misdemeanor charges, said Warren County Prosecutor David Fornshell.
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“Last Saturday night law enforcement took the steps they believed were necessary to protect the guests,” Fornshell said. ““This is not the type of thing you expect to happen, or should happen, in a place you go for fun.”
The adult was identified as Charles Brown, 18, of Cincinnati, and the teens ranged in age from 14 to 17. None of the suspects are currently in custody.
Fornshell said four of the six charged today “appeared to be acquainted with one another.”
Kings Island closed 30 minutes early Saturday because of “unruly behavior and altercations” involving teenagers, park officials confirmed.
“It does seem like a lot of this was building throughout the day,” Fornshell said.
The Mason Police Department said officers responded to reports of “unruly guests primarily juveniles” inside the park and in the parking lot, according to our news partners at WCPO-TV.
According to WCPO-TV, the Ohio State Highway Patrol also responded to the scene, and an OSHP spokesperson confirmed there were multiple fights inside the park before a bigger altercation in the parking lot Saturday evening.
“In 10 years, we’ve not seen anything like what we saw,” Fornshell said. “This is a priority for our office.”
Kings Island sent a statement regarding the situation to News Center 7 Sunday:
“The safety of our guests and associates is always our top priority. On Saturday, the decision was made to close the park 30 minutes early due to unruly behavior and altercations involving a number of teenagers. This behavior did not align with our park’s values, and was not the experience we want any guest to have while visiting Kings Island.”
On Tuesday, Kings Island released an updated statement saying they are taking “immediate steps to address the situation” so guests can enjoy future visits.
“We have zero tolerance for this kind of behavior and we believe those responsible should be held accountable,” the release said.
Park officials say the following actions are being taken:
- We have shared video footage and guest information with the Mason Police Department for their investigation. We have been in regular contact to discuss the ongoing investigation and next steps.
- There will be increased security and police at the park beginning this weekend.
- We will continue to utilize our Protect Our Park program, which enables guests to report any safety or security concern through their mobile device.
- We are implementing additional security protocols and operational policies as appropriate.
“We believe these actions will help ensure that Kings Island remains what it has been for nearly 50 years-a place where generations of families and friends can gather for a day of safe fun and good food. More than 3 million guests a year have counted on us for exactly that since we opened in 1972, and we will continue to deliver on that promise for generations to come,” the park said in the release.
Cox Media Group