Gadi Schwartz, Kenny Holmes
Five people were arrested as large crowds flooded the streets of Huntington Park to celebrate Mexico's win over Croatia in the World Cup. Gadi Schwartz reports from Huntington Park for the NBC4 News at 11 on Monday, June 23, 2014.
Police on horseback and clad in riot gear arrested several rowdy soccer fans as they worked to disperse crowds who poured into the streets of Huntington Park on Monday following Mexico’s latest win in the World Cup.
Huntington Park police, with support from the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, said they arrested five people, including a pair for public intoxication and one for hurling a bottle at officers.
Significant traffic delays were reported across the city. Authorities closed off several blocks of the heavily trafficked Pacific Boulevard shopping corridor north of Florence Avenue. Drivers were advised to avoid the area and pedestrians were urged to stay out of the streets.
At least two sheriff's department helicopters flew overhead to monitor the crowds as officers patrolled the streets in black armored vehicles.
Aerial footage showed officers and deputies forming lines to contain crowds of El Tri faithful, some of whom waved Mexican flags and rocked cars along Pacific Boulevard.
One business owner said she was pushed down by officers as she asked to close her store.
"I don't feel like a person, I feel like an animal," the woman said.
Police said traffic was affected on Florence, Gage, Slauson and Santa Fe avenues, as well as on Pacific Boulevard and Alameda Street.
In the Pacoima area, police blocked off streets near Van Nuys and Laurel Canyon boulevards as a large crowd of soccer fans assembled to celebrate.
Earlier in the day, Mexico defeated Croatia 3-1 to advance to the second round of the World Cup.
Huntington Park police said last week they were prepared to head off any disturbances in the small city where previous World Cup street celebrations turned into "civil unrest."
Gadi Schwartz contributed to this report.