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Brawl erupts inside Target Center during high school basketball championship game

Brawl erupts in inside Target Center during high school basketball championship game
Brawl erupts in Target Center during high school basketball championship game 02:12

MINNEAPOLIS -- A melee and a report of gunfire at the Target Center caused a large police response Saturday night during the Minnesota high school boys basketball tournament.

Minneapolis police say it received a report of possible shots fired inside Target Center just before 9 p.m. MPD worked with security and confirmed no shots were fired. They were unable to confirm the presence of a gun.

Police say a fight did occur inside the concourse, which law enforcement quickly got under control. It's unclear what led to the original disturbance, which happened during the championship game between Wayzata and Park Center.

The Minnesota State High School League released this statement Sunday: "The MSHSL worked collaboratively with Target Center staff, security and Minneapolis ensure the safety of all spectators at the event. Minneapolis Police remained on site throughout the end of the game to ensure the safe exit of all spectators."

A witness shared video of the fight with WCCO. 

"I'm looking at that kid laying on the ground being stomped, and that's somebody's child," said Bishop Harding Smith, president of nonprofit Minnesota Acts Now. "Where are the adults?"


After the game, more fights broke out outside the arena. Smith says teaching young people accountability and non-violence are necessary to slow youth violence.

"It's upon us as adults, as community activists and leaders and pastors and bishops to instill these values into our kids," he said. "If we don't, we're gonna lose this war."

Smith's nonprofit is turning a Brooklyn Park building into a youth empowerment center that he says will include a gaming room, mentorship and job training skills.

"[It'll be a place] where we can meet our kids and have an honest discussion with them about violence," Smith said. "Talking to them, 'Your life is greater, your future is greater than what you see before you, and it starts now.'"

Smith says they're currently accepting donations for work on the center.

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