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West Point pillow fight turns violent, 30 injured

By
Amy R. Connolly

WEST POINT, N.Y., Sept. 5 (UPI) -- A traditional end-of-summer pillow fight meant as a harmless way for West Point freshman cadets to blow off steam turned violent when some packed hard objects into pillowcases.

At least 30 cadets were injured, 24 suffering concussions, in the {link:annual freshman pillow fight at the United States Military Academy, West Point officials said. Some said pillowcases were stuffed with helmets.

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The brawl at the academy, where many Army leaders are trained, may have also left split lips, at least one broken bone and dislocated shoulders, according to cadets interviewed by the New York Times. The annual fight happened on Aug. 20, but it wasn't confirmed by West Point until this week.

"West Point applauds the cadets' desire to build esprit and regrets the injuries to our cadets," West Point spokesman Lt. Col. Christopher Kasker said. "We are conducting appropriate investigations into the causes of the injuries."

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The annual fight is organized by first-year students to build camaraderie after a summer program that prepares them the rigors of the plebe year. No cadets have been punished.

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