Las Palmas Officials May No Longer Allow Tailgaters after Last Saturday’s Parking Lot Brawl
There could be some changes to how tailgating and parking at a popular, private parking lot is handled after video of the melee that took place there before the start of Saturday’s UTEP vs. Texas Tech game went viral yesterday.
In a statement released to the media, Las Palmas Lifecare Center Marketing and Communications Director Melissa Offutt said the company is re-thinking its policy on Game Day parking.
Offutt said they are "disappointed in the events that transpired,” adding the rehabilitation facility has allowed tailgaters on their property on game days for 12 years without an incident, but because of “the serious incident before Saturday's game, we are assessing public access to [the parking lot] on game days." She did not elaborate on when the center plans to make a concrete decision on their parking policy.
As to why many eye witnesses said there was no security presence there, ABC-7 spoke with Ernie Gluck who owns the land the Lifecare Center sits on as well as Rudolph Plaza, the neighboring strip mall, and he told them he’d hired two constables to patrol the lot but that they were responding to a different incident behind the Rudolph Plaza at around the same time the altercation broke out.
He added he plans to have two constables watching over the strip mall parking lot, and two more patrolling the Lifecare Center lot this weekend, should Las Palmas' officials decide to continue to allow use of their parking lot.
In a related note, KFOX 14 is reporting that the El Paso Police Department will have extra patrols in and around the campus when New Mexico State University and their fans visit the Sun Bowl for the annual Battle of I-10 this Saturday.
Cliff Walsh, Chief of police for UTEP, told the news station he has no plans to increase their manpower. He said campus police would have the same amount of patrols as they normally do for any UTEP home game.