A viral TikTok party led to the arrest of over 149 people for unlawful assembly on May 22 and an additional 29 people on May 23 in Huntington Beach.
“Adrian’s Kickback” was a social gathering that went viral on Tiktok after 17-year-old Adrian Lopez posted an open invitation on May 17 to a kickback for his birthday in Huntington Beach scheduled for May 22 at 7:30 pm.
“It was meant to be for my school,” Lopez said to the New York Times.
The post quickly went viral as several people implied that they might attend the gathering. The kickback gained more traction as famous TikTokers began to hype up the event. One individual asserted that they would drive over 18 hours with a group of people to attend the gathering.
Over 1 thousand people showed up to Huntington Beach in preparation for “Adrian’s Kickback” on Friday, May 21, prompting the police to shut down the gathering that night.
Over 2,500 people showed up at Huntington Beach on May 22 for the event. Partygoers tired of the pandemic’s isolation danced, partied and launched fireworks throughout the night until Huntington Beach police officials arrived.
In videos, people were seen jumping off of lifeguard posts, bridges and launching fireworks.
150 officers from agencies throughout Orange County were dispatched to Huntington Beach in response to calls for assistance. The police officers showed up in riot gear to handle and deescalate the situation.
By the end of the night, over 149 arrests were made and 29 of the individuals arrested were under the age of 18. Most of those arrested were from Southern California, while others were from out of state.
Sunday followed with 29 more arrests, 13 of which were of juveniles. The police stated that these individuals were arrested under the suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon, firing dangerous or illegal fireworks, resisting arrest and failure to disperse.
Lopez’s friend, Yahir Hernandez, organized refunds for individuals who had purchased tickets for the following weekend of the event.
Henry Lopez is a City News intern for the spring 2021 quarter. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.