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Brawl Erupts At East St. Louis Food Stamp Office

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CHICAGO (CBS) — A dispute over a spot in line at a food stamp office downstate escalated into a full-fledged brawl.

The fight on Tuesday was captured on video and shows at least four women wrestling and punching each other.

At one point, the video shows two women grabbing each other while a third punches one of them on the back of the head. At another point, a woman walks across the office and punches another person in the face.

Security officers struggled to end the chaos. It took them several minutes to separate the group and restore order. Some of the people involved in the fight initially refused to leave.

The incident happened at the Illinois Department of Human Services office in East St. Louis, reportedly only a few blocks from the police station there.

The nearly three-minute video was posted on You Tube.

“It`s just been cool, everybody standing in line, doing what they do, trying to get their stamps, trying to get, you know, whatever they`re trying to get. It`s never been like this in there,” Detria Graves, founder of a local binge eating disorder center told KTVI, the FOX affiliate in St. Louis.

A spokeswoman with the State Department of Human Services in Springfield said the staff was unaware of the video.

East St. Louis Mayor, Alvin Parks, called for metal detectors at the office at 9th and Missouri, KTVI reported.

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