Sunday, September 25, 2011

Another hectic weekend for APD

1057 North Pleasant Street, Amherst @ 6:45 AM Sunday

Saturday night as the witching hour fast approached, a half dozen squad cars and the large transport van (referred to as a "paddy wagon" way back in the day) converged on the center of Meadow Street directly in front of the main entry to Townhouse Apartments, where students had been congregating all night long--fueled by warm humid air and beer.

Like Old West cowboys, APD herded the massive crowd of students away from Meadow Street--which by then had become impassable to cars--back into the confines of the sprawling apartment complexes that consists almost entirely of UMass students.

Then they turned their attention to the large house on the slummy side of Meadow Street with all the cars parked on the lawn, which had been attracting overloaded taxis for most of the night--contributing to the gridlock on Meadow Street.

As the officers moved as a unit towards a side entrance where a few residents were still milling about I heard the clang of an empty beer can ricochet off the road at their feet.

This congested, claustrophobic--dangerous--scene of too many students and too few cops was replayed on Phillips Street, Hobart Lane, and upper North Pleasant Street between 10:00 PM and 1:00 AM. With students crossing those roads freely back-and-forth in droves, I'm amazed there were no people vs car incidents.

Meanwhile, back in Amherst center McMurphy's and Stackers had lines of young people waiting to get to the bar, while next door a friendly crowd formed in front of Antonio's Pizza, happily chowing down. Cell phones chirped, a street musician played the xylophone and an incessant car alarm was almost drown out by the cacophony of loud conversations coming from consumers all along the busy street, looking for something to do.

Just another late Saturday night in our little (college) town.

374 North Pleasant Street, Amherst @ 6:40 AM Sunday

22 comments:

Anonymous said...

Let me see -- we have one incident (bank robbery) that Lt. Young views as so serious that he wrecks a police car responding to it, and then we have what Larry writes about.

Who is the police officer Larry, you or he? And perhaps if you didn't make such a fuss about PEOPLE TRYING TO LIVE THEIR LIVES WITHOUT YOU JUDGING THEM, we might know a bit more about the real crime in this town...

Joe1966 said...

Meadow Street was NOT fun on Saturday night. Had at least two dozen (yes, two dozen) young ladies cross over onto my property to pee.....the young men simply turned their backs and did their business without walking so far away from the party. I don't think most people in town realize just how bad it has gotten up here. 53 Meadow was the worst.

LarryK4 said...

Yes Joe, maybe we should install digital cameras near the hot spots with a live Internet feed, that way people could tune in for themselves and see how bad it really is.

Anon 2:11 AM
I believe Lt. Young was quoted in the Gazette expressing great concern about this particular issue, which is a tad more prevalent than bank robberies.

Anonymous said...

One Spring- the town had a large platoon of state police stationed at the middle school. They were on call to help with the Hoedown. Zero tolerance!

Looks like we are at that point Amherst needs that help *every* weekend.

Anonymous said...

Too bad the porta potty on Meadow is tipped over- the students could've used that!

(Time to get the tipped potty out of there!)

Anonymous said...

If you've ever lived next to a party house, you'd realize just how awful it is. And i feel bad for the people who actually own the homes next to these party houses. There's no way they can sell their homes except to undersell it to the contractor/realtor pair who are adding to the slumification of Amherst.

Anonymous said...

where are the UMASS administrators? why don't they come out and take some responsibility and control of their students?

Anonymous said...

374 North Pleasant Street is a nightmare! Something needs to be done about the trash and parties - day and night. Who owns that property?

LarryK4 said...

THETA MU HOUSING CORPORATION ATTN BRIAN POITRAS, PRESIDENT CALARE PROP. 43 BROAD ST
HUDSON, MA 01749

Anonymous said...

Let's see, students had a party, students ate pizza, students crossed a street. Wow! This is a regular crime wave.

Anonymous said...

Oh puh-leez! "We need that help every weekend". Why don't you and I (townies) push for a police department that we need. No more BS - feel good mutual aid agreements with campus cops and start funding what we have. Stabbings, bank robberies, and massive drunk college crowds and parties rein supreme and require resources. I was SHOCKED to learn that APD has under 50 cops while the university has over 60. Hell, Northampton has in the 70s. These guys need help. Let's give it to em. Too many dangerous events with too little help.

Anonymous said...

Hadley even touts more police - in numbers - than Amherst. Yet they pay half in property tax. Where'd the override go?

Anonymous said...

Amherst Town Meeting is full of people who think that we already have too many police officers to begin with. Go to town meeting, and watch when the police budget is brought up; you'll see older "former" hippies who still think the police are the "bad guys". Time to vote out these people and put in TM members who have the community's best interest at heart and not some special agenda.

LarryK4 said...

Yeah, one in particular who was busted by the state for inappropriate contact with a child. Twice.

(No wonder he has something against law enforcement.)

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 8:16 AM:

Sure, vote the bums out -- or run as one of the bums yourself. Very many (if not most) Town Meeting seats are uncontested in the elections; some are even vacant, with not a single citizen willing to fill them.

So rather than complaining ineffectually about how Town Meeting is out of touch, why not step up, fill a seat, and actually do something about it?

(You could also work to abolish the whole system, but that would take substantially more effort.)

Keith Ulrich

LarryK4 said...

I vote the latter.

Anonymous said...

revise the charter!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Anon 3:58, you know where the override went. The School God is a jealous god.

Anonymous said...

yes, end town meeting because of wild drinking by some umass students! that will solve everything that is wrong!

Anonymous said...

Dont forget it was a hectic weekend for AFD too. And they are shockingly understaffed.

LarryK4 said...

Indeed.

I'd love to join forces with a reporter/photographer from the Gazette, Springfield Republican and Daily Collegian and have us shadow APD, UMPD, and sit one at Central Station some Friday or Saturday night over the next four weeks and just document the hell out of a single wild night.

Anonymous said...

Keith; I did my time in town meeting; well over 10 years there. I finally gave up when I realized that the people being voted in all had special agenda's that didn't necessarily benefit the greater good of the town. I found it frustrating to sit through the multiple meetings where certain people had something to say about *everything* and would make it drag out forever. Micro managing at it's best. So I can say "Vote them out!".