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Rancho Mirage HOA meeting turns into a brawl

Election results spark feud between residents and board members

HOA meeting turns into a brawl

RANCHO MIRAGE, Calif. - Brawls usually happen in bars, not multi-million dollar country clubs.

"These are high class people, wealthy people. These aren't people who get in fist fights with each other," Everett Greeno said.

On Sunday, though, at The Springs Country Club in Rancho Mirage, fists were flying.

"I think you have people getting up in ears on one side, people on the board who begin to think possibly they own the place," Robert Smith, who lives in the Springs but was not at that HOA meeting, said.

The Riverside County Sheriff's Department said Home Owner's Association election results sparked the fight.

"There were two openings for board and the board suggested only two people to run. A third individual who lived here and decided he would run, and that obviously didn't go well," Smith said.
During the meeting, talking escalated to yelling. Authorities say it then turned to pushing, punching, tackling and even chair throwing.

"I've lived in about three areas now with Homeowners Associations, first time I've seen something quite this..." Smith said.

The sheriff's department said they were called to the brawl at the clubhouse around 4:00. Police continue to investigate to see who is at fault.

The Springs HOA released this statement: We are deeply saddened by the events. We are completely at odds with what The Springs is really like.

On Facebook, viewers had a lto to say about heated HOA meetings.

"HOA's are no different than our government," Jarrod wrote.

Shris commented, "People with the biggest egos go for offices in the HOA and have some sort of power trip over their fellow residents."

Two people were taken to the hospital -- one with minor bumps and bruises and one had a seizure.  

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