After concert brawl, debate gets heated in North Park

SAN DIEGO -- One month after a rapper was brutally sucker punched on stage during a concert at the Observatory North Park, causing a large brawl to spill into the streets, city Councilman Chris Ward held a community forum to discuss the incident.

“This is just the beginning,” Ward said to a packed audience Thursday night. “We all need to work together to come up with a solution that works for everyone.”

The incident in June brought frustration among North Park residents to an all-time high, prompting more than a hundred people to voice their concern at the forum hosted by San Diego police and managers of the venue.

“Seriously, things got completely out of control that night. We can’t ever have that happen again,” said one North Park resident.

“That was a one-time thing,” said another. “I’m really happy they’re here.”

The venue draws big-name acts like Snoop Dogg and has a capacity of 1,100 people, and neighbors said the brawl was not the first time rowdy concertgoers have continued the party along 29th Street. Many complained of drunken fights and trash.

Paris Landen, the Observatory's general manager, called it “an isolated incident” and said they send security into the neighborhood afterward to pick up trash. She also noted they have 42 security guards -- twice as many as their license requires.

Police estimate their investigation will take another two weeks, after which Ward plans to hold another forum to discuss further steps.