In Galveston, police officers launched canisters of pepper spray into a crowd of Mardi Gras revelers early Sunday morning as they cleared the streets at the end of the night’s celebrations.
Kudos to the Galveston Police officers working the Mardi Gras on Saturday evening on The Strand. Their controlled and measured response to a relatively small group of revelers who turned ugly at closing contained a situation that could have rapidly become riotous.
The decision to use tear gas undoubtedly contained a disturbance that had the potential to get out of control and spread to a larger segment of revelers. I do not know who the commander on the scene was, but he deserves to be publicly acknowledged for his decision.
It is significant that one of the agitators instigating the situation was identified as a local gang member rather than a tourist. Perhaps a sentence including a period of residence in the Galveston County Jail might discourage similar behavior in the future.