Hundreds of Rival Soccer Fans Brawl in Lodi; Several Injured

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LODI -- A soccer match at the Grape Bowl in Lodi Saturday night led to violent clashes in the street.

The fight was between hundreds of fans of rival Mexican soccer teams Leyendas De Las Chivas and Leyendas De La America.

"One of them was split open from the head and he was bleeding and one of them the knee was all bleeding," said witness Anthony Silva.

Silva lives nearby and says families were running from the Grape Bowl terrified as fans went after each other with bottles and pipes.

"You see kids, like little kids, like 3 or 4 years old, running away scared, like crying and stuff," Silva recalled.

Silva says several Lodi police cars showed up fast but at first the officers did not act.

"They didn't get out of their cars or nothing," Silva said. "A Stars member, a Lodi Stars member, an old person got out of the car before the younger persons did."

Lodi police say when their patrol cars arrived there were around 200 people involved in the fight and those officers were greatly outnumbered. So they waited for backup.

"Assistance was requested from California Highway Patrol and the San Joaquin County Sheriff's Office, both of whom responded to assist us," said Lodi Police Officer Jerry Bahr.

In the meantime, Silva says the fight continued and some of the fans were prepared to battle.

"One of the guys looked like he had a bulletproof vest on and he had like armor padding down his arms," Silva told FOX40.

Neighbor Shannon Munoz says Lodi police continued to wait in their cars for another 15 minutes while the fighting raged on.

"And they had their sirens on, they would do that 'eee' every so often, but they did not get out of their vehicle until the partner person came," Munoz said.

Lodi police believe the fans were mostly from out of town. Several people were taken to the hospital, according to the department, and one victim had cuts from a knife. But in all the chaos, Bahr reports no arrests were made.

Munoz is not happy about that.

"The fact that they did not make one single arrest, that's not OK because that tells people that that's OK to do in our town and it's not," he said.

Lodi police are looking for any photos or video people took during the fight. If you have some you can contact the Lodi Police Department at 209-333-6727.

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