A Witness Recap
 Hello. As many of you know, my name is Diane Fornbacher. I was present at the July 12 riot in State College, PA.   Many have voiced their opinions on how or why the riot started. I am here to tell you what I know to be the truths I witnessed.  I know not how the foray started;  I was merely walking a few friends home from a smoke session.

I happened to notice as I neared Beaver Canyon (an affectionate term for the second of two main downtown roads in State College) and noticed the high-rise apartment building of Penn Tower with reflections of what appeared to be a rather gargantuan fire on its side.  Naturally, I was quite curious, and as I neared the street, I began to realize there were thousands of people on Beaver Avenue. I walked faster to see the commotion and a police officer came up to me and explained that there "was nothing to see," which obviously was a lie and that I was to not take any further steps into the blocked area. I, of course, did not care to listen.

I ran around a few fraternity's and found a small alleyway, which led directly to the middle of the riot. There was a huge fire being fed by everything anyone could find. I was too scared to get near the blaze, for there were too many people pushing at each other and I was afraid to get burned or worse.  Smoke was filling the air with what I assumed was toxic fumes because everyone started coughing and it smelled absolutely horrid. I witnessed a few lightpoles get torn down by a bunch a teeming drunkards and was suprised at how effortless mass destruction seemed. I had, by this time, covered my face with my t-shirt and began to notice several police begin to gather at the intersection of Pugh Street and Beaver (about a block from the big fire) in full riot gear. There was a fire truck and some ambulances behind them. Rioters were throwing beer bottles and whatever else they could find at the law enforcement, yelling derogatory terms of endearment. Others were still standing motionless in the midst of the melee. I was...uh.....completely innocent of any wrongdoing. At least, there's no evidence that I disrupting the law, anyway....

Around 2:30, the police began to storm toward the crowds, hitting people indiscriminately and I was nearly trampled to death by thousands of drunk participants and witnesses alike.  I ran only 1/2 a block before I went back to see what happened.  The police had not retreated but were warning people to "get out or go to jail" and chasing some more belligerent rioters.  Others were yelling at people who weren't doing anything at all, except staring in shock.

At this point, I became bored and went home. No big deal. I wonder when the next one's going to happen.... And to think earlier in the day, I was protesting marijuana laws peacefully and the piggies wouldn't let us pass out literature...And they wonder why people riot for "no apparent reason whatsoever."

More pics of the riot (click to enlarge):

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You can connect to the State College Police Department site where they are "trying" to indentify the rioters who were caught on film. If you are a person turning these films into the police, I pity you because it must feel like shit to be a narc.  Maybe I don't  agree with ALL that was done, but I felt since inhibitions are released after downing a few drinks, the police shouldn't have been suprised at the repressed young Americans "fighting back" because they can't pretend to love bullshit their whole lives. And for someone to narc is cowardice in its worst form. Karma is gonna get you and it's not gonna be pretty.

*more stories, pictures and info at the Centre Daily Times website (State College's local paper).