It Took 16 Police Departments To Break Up A Wedding Brawl In PA

Four police officers were hospitalized while seven people, including the groom, were hauled away in handcuffs.

Seven arrested at wedding reception melee in Ontelaunee

A wedding reception in Ontelaunee Township, Pennsylvania, turned in to an ultimate melee after some of the partygoers got into a booze-induced fight and more than a dozen police departments responded to the scene with stun guns and batons.

From what police have pieced together, the altercation started when a wedding guest, Mandi Groh, punched another woman in the face for complaining about Groh’s 14-year-old son’s alcohol consumption. The 32-year-old woman then went on to punch the woman’s husband and suddenly, fists started to fly and chaos ensued.

By the time Northern Berks officers turned up, the guests were scattered on the ground, some of them even shirtless and bloody, according to a police report.

"When we arrived we initially found one individual that was bleeding and was somewhat belligerent, and he was taken into custody right away," Chief Scott Eaken from Northern Berks Regional Police told WFMZ-TV. “Several people were trying to be a calming influence in all of this but at this point alcohol had taken over,” he added.

However, that was just the beginning.

The drunk wedding crowd immediately began to turn on the cops and started threatening them, at which point, the responding officers had to call in for backup from Fleetwood, Hamburg, Penn State, Berks County, Wyomissing, Bern, Spring, Tilden, Reading and Muhlenberg forces, among others.

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“I just saw three groups separating and fighting, and at that point I realized I needed some help,” said Doug Mehrkam, owner of the reception venue. “They were all pushing and shoving each other and it looked like it was getting nasty.”

Things got uglier when the groom, Nicholas Papoutsis, refused to calm down and allegedly challenged the police to fight him.

Needless to say, his inebriated exploits got him and six other partygoers arrested for disorderly conduct, public drunkenness, interfering with law enforcement, assault, and failing to disperse. As for that 14-year-old, his blood alcohol level was determined to be 0.16 percent, twice the legal limit for adults.

Meanwhile the “upset” bride, who fortunately did not get detained by the police, was treated for dehydration and alcohol poisoning later at the scene.

However, even though the entire thing went completely out of control, the bride and groom will certainly have an interesting wedding anecdote to tell their children and grandchildren in the future.

“I wish the couple luck in the future because it's not a very good start,” Mehrkam added.

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