This year’s annual "go topless" Jeep weekend in Texas resulted in more than 100 arrests and dozens of people, including a sheriff’s deputy, sent to the hospital during the event attended by tens of thousands.
More than 80,000 revelers attended the weekend-long event for Jeep enthusiasts at Crystal Beach on the Bolivar Peninsula, a popular beach destination in Galveston County, Texas.
Galveston County Sheriff Henry Trochesset told FOX 26 Houston that more than 100 people were arrested over the weekend, as deputies responded to multiple assaults, fights and DWIs.
One of his deputies, identified as Sgt. John Hamm, was responding to a crash around 1:30 a.m. Sunday on Highway 87 and Holiday Drive when he was struck by a suspected drunk driver in another vehicle, KHOU reported. He was airlifted to the University of Texas Medical Branch, KTRK-TV reported.
The driver accused of striking the deputy was identified as Darius Danzell Gilbert.
The 22-year-old from China, a city in Jefferson County, Texas, was arrested and charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon on a peace officer. He was being held on a $100,000 bond.
The deputy nearly went through the car’s windshield due to the impact, Trochesset said. Hamm suffered two broken legs, as well as an arm and a head injury, and was undergoing surgery Sunday morning.
At least 38 individuals were transported to area hospitals during the Jeep weekend. That included eight people brought by helicopter, and the remaining dozens transported by ground, KPRC reported.
Saturday’s event alone was attended by up to 40,000 people.
Galveston County Emergency Services District No.2 said on Facebook Sunday that the large influx of people was straining emergency services on the Bolivar Peninsula, noting a significant increase in the size of the crowds this year. Trochesset said about 200 people were arrested during 2021’s event.