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Dahlonega officials report ‘quiet weekend’ after rumors of more parties
08172020 PARTY
Trash is strewn across the parking lot of University Heights housing in Dahlonega on Monday, Aug. 17, 2020. News of a large weekend party at the off-campus complex spread across social media as the University of North Georgia prepared for its first day of class Monday. - photo by Jacob Smith

Update, Sept. 29: After posting a video warning students about attending rumored parties in Dahlonega, local law enforcement reported no calls for service and an otherwise peaceful weekend.

“We had no problems at all. It was a quiet weekend,” Dahlonega City Marshal Jeff Branyon.

In a Facebook video Thursday, Sept. 24, Lumpkin County Sheriff Stacy Jarrard warned students at University of North Georgia’s Dahlonega campus against attending parties rumored to be planned at an off-campus housing complex.

Sheriff’s Office Lt. Alan Roach said Monday, Sept. 28, there were no calls for service but had officers conduct “periodic extra patrols throughout the weekend.”

“We had seen some social media posts, but we didn’t encounter anything,” Branyon said.

The sheriff’s comments in the Facebook video mentioned the large party last month, where hundreds were shown on video at the University Heights property in Dahlonega standing close together without masks days before classes were set to resume. The university said then it was “disappointed that many of our students chose to ignore COVID-19 public health guidance” by congregating without social distancing or face masks.

University spokeswoman Sylvia Carson said Monday the school did not receive any reports of off-campus events this weekend.


In a Facebook video this week, Lumpkin County Sheriff Stacy Jarrard warned students at University of North Georgia’s Dahlonega campus against attending parties that are rumored to be planned this weekend at an off-campus housing complex. 

The sheriff’s comments mentioned the large party last month, where hundreds were shown on video at the University Heights property in Dahlonega standing close together without masks days before classes were set to resume. The university said then it was “disappointed that many of our students chose to ignore COVID-19 public health guidance” by congregating without social distancing or face masks. 

Jarrard said Thursday, Sept. 24, in a video posted to the Sheriff’s Office’s Facebook that they have learned of another possible gathering either Thursday night or this weekend at that same property. The Times has asked the office whether a party took place Thursday. 

"We've put measures in place now that will affect this, and I would encourage parents to talk to their children that are going to college here at the University of North Georgia about these locations,” Jarrard said in the video. “We don't want them to go away with a criminal record or we don't want to have to give them a citation.” 

Jarrard said the department will have extra staff working and the office will be monitoring the situation. 

"With the pandemic that's going on with the COVID virus ... there should not be large gatherings that's possibly going to take place,” Jarrard said. 

The Times has reached out to the Sheriff’s Office and the university to learn more about the situation. Check back for updates. 

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