Fights break out after thousands line up for Section 8 housing assistance near Detroit

5,000 showed up, only 1,000 vouchers available

TAYLOR, Mich. - Several people were arrested after a crowd waiting for a Section 8 housing voucher in Michigan got out of control Saturday.

Police say thousands of people from all over the area lined up at the center. Many were homeless, single moms, or disabled.  They were hoping to get help paying for their housing from the government.

"There was (sic) elderly, disabled people, pregnant single women. They were here for help, to get their Section 8 vouchers.  It just shows you what a desperate need... some were here since yesterday," said Rhianna Rodriguez.

7 Action News was told there were 1,000 vouchers available and 5,000 people showed up to get one. Witnesses say the line stretched for a mile down the street.

Police say, when the time came for the vouchers to be distributed, there was a mad rush for the door.  Officers tried to control the crowd, but couldn't.

Officers had to shut down several lanes of Eureka Road until the situation could be brought under control.

The Detroit Free Press reports that four people were arrested for disorderly conduct.  The rest were sent home.

"There was a lady with an oxygen tank. She was elderly. When they told everybody they had to go home and they weren't going to help, she was in tears," said Rodriguez.


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