TAYLOR, Mich. - A chaotic scene erupted at a human services center in Taylor, Mich. Saturday when the crowd waiting for a distribution of Section 8 Housing vouchers got out of control.
Police said thousands of people from all over the area were at the Taylor Human Services Center in suburban Detroit on Saturday. Many were homeless, single parents or disabled. They were hoping to get help paying for their housing from the government.
"There was 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," Rhianna Rodriguez said.
Scripps sister station WXYZ in Detroit was told there were 1,000 vouchers available and 5,000 people showed up trying to get one.
The crowd had grown overnight as more and more people arrived. Witnesses said the line stretched for a mile down a road.
Police said 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 a road in the area until the situation could be brought under control.
Several people were arrested. The rest were sent home.
Saturday's distribution has been canceled and will be rescheduled.
"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," Rodriguez said.
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