Law enforcement officers shut down a rural Maries County party and made arrests in conjunction with the event early Thursday.
The Maries County Sheriff's Department reports its deputies and Missouri Highway Patrol troopers responded to a report of property damage where several hundred people were partying at a location on County Road 611.
On the way to investigate, deputies saw a vehicle driving slowly, weaving and stopping on Highway 42 near the party spot. The 21-year-old woman driver was arrested on suspicion of driving while intoxicated.
The sheriff's department also received reports of intoxicated minors walking down the middle of the highway, and several fights taking place at the party. A male driver was stopped while leaving the party and arrested on suspicion of DWI. Numerous citations were issued to several minors for intoxication.
The sheriff's department additionally reported a female minor who was intoxicated and attempting to leave the party was stopped and asked to exit her vehicle but refused. She reportedly struck a deputy in the face during the incident. She was arrested for resisting arrest and assault on a law enforcement officer.
Officers stopped several intoxicated people from leaving the party and forced them to find a sober driver for a ride home.
Investigators also claim the host of the party had hired a disc jockey, and was charging money to get in. Criminal charges may be filed against the host.
"This party was out of control, and I am grateful that no one was seriously injured," said Sheriff Chris Heitman. "We found people at the party from all over the area. There were more people at this party than we, even with the assistance of the Highway Patrol, could control."
Calling it "a problem that kills," Heitman warned motorists not to make the mistake of driving drunk.
In a separate incident Thursday evening, sheriff's deputies responded to a vehicle crash on U.S. 63 near Maries County Road 302. The driver of the vehicle appeared to be intoxicated and was seriously injured. The wreck is still under investigation.