CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (WNCN) — The streets of Chapel Hill were empty Sunday night, a much different scene from just 24 hours earlier as UNC students rushed Franklin street after the big win over Duke, despite warnings not to due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Even in a pandemic we’re college students,” said one UNC student.
Chapel Hill Mayor Pam Hemminger said more than 100 students in the crowd have already been identified.
“We thought they were taking it more seriously. Now that this has happened we will be thinking differently. The community is just so upset about this because it’s so disrespectful to the people who are most vulnerable,” said Hemminger.
Despite hundreds of complaints, in person classes for undergrads are still scheduled Monday. However faculty members do have the option to continue with remote instruction for one week as a safety measure, UNC officials said Sunday.
The UNC chancellor released a statement saying in part: “All leads will be evaluated and students found to have violated covid community standards will be subject to disciplinary action.”
Still business owners in the area worry about the potential health and business risks the incident has created for the community.
“No one can really open while they’re doing this kind of stuff. Like how do they ever expect us to fully open when they’re like mobbing the streets,” said Jenin Kadoura, a manager of Mediterranean Deli.
“I know everyone wants to be regular again, but it’s going to be very difficult if they keep acting like that. It’s not just a good time for them it’s impacting the whole community,” said Ambara Kadoura also a manager at Mediterranean Deli.
The university says students that violate COVID-19 guidelines could be removed from student housing and even unenrolled from the school.