Monday, March 26, 2012

Fight For Your Right Party House

 370 Pelham Road, Amherst

While young adults their age are fighting and dying in a far off country, these boys are hastling their neighbors for calling the police trying to maintain the quiet enjoyment of their most cherished possession--home.  That too is a bedrock American right.

When police arrived at 370 Pelham Road around 10:00 PM Saturday night, called by a neighbor who stated her husband was in a verbal confrontation with a rowdy party boy, police discovered the source of the noise:  a live band.

Yes, this is the second time these perps have been arrested and heavily fined for a party using a live band.  You think they would have learned the first time.  But no, they are entitled.   

According to APD logs:
RP reporting her husband is on the front porch arguing with a male neighbor.  The neighbor came over unprovoked and started arguing with RP's husband about them complaining about noise coming from the neighbors house in the past.

Live band planing upon arrival.  20+ guests were cleared out.  Guests confronted Officers about breaking the party up, stating they had "rights" and that it was a "birthday party".

Arrested for Noise:
Nelson P Klein, 179 Appleton Street, Cambridge, MA, age 23
Geoffrey Dempsey, 6 Fruit Street, Hopkinton, MA, age 23
James Toshana, 370 Pelham Rd, Amherst, MA, age 19

Property Ownership Card for 370 Pelham Road, Amherst


Anonymous said...

Oh oh. Two houses on Lincoln Avenue, between Fearing and the UMass campus, have just gone into Sale Pending. One was on the market for a while, the other was not (at least for long). Cherawatti Death Star strikes again?

Anonymous said...

Probably likely to turn into student housing by the new owner(s).

Anonymous said...

Time to double the fines. This is turning into a sweet little revenue stream!

LarryK said...

I think they are currently at the maximum allowed by state law.

Ed said...

Just remember -- APD can't fine Lincoln Apartments. You folk are gonna have fun next year.

Suc** to be you....

Anonymous said...

Now why don't we put some of that money back into public safety?

Anonymous said...

First of all, I'd like to say that I am one of the residents who got arrested that night.

I'd like to point out a few of what I believe are inaccuracies.

- I am personally offended by the first paragraph. I am a Marine veteran who served in Afghanistan in 2009 and am currently going to UMass, on the GI Bill, for electrical engineering, the workload of which I'm beginning next semester.

- The "rowdy party boy" is really not the rowdy type. At all. He is a very collected and peaceful person and, from my experience, takes steps to prevent confrontation rather than avoid it; he walked across the street to ask the neighbors to let us know if it became too loud so we could take the noise down.

- In reference to the third paragraph: what exactly is it that you think we believe we're entitle to?

- The three of us were arrested as we were ushering out the guests, and order they gave us as soon as they got to our house.

I'd like to humbly ask that you know who you're talking about before you make such assumptions. We are not unreasonable people. Hence, if we are doing something unreasonable (noise), I ask that the neighbors talk to us to solve the problem instead of getting the legal system involved; they have more important things to deal with than arresting students/veterans for a town bylaw, a civil misdemeanor.

I urge that the neighbor come speak to us, whenever they'd like, so we can get to know each other instead of fighting pointless battles. Trust me; I know what a pointless war, on a large scale, can do to a person.


Geoffrey Dempsey
Former Marine Sergeant
Veteran of Afghanistan

Anonymous said...

Sergeant Dempsey (I’m going to give you the benefit of the doubt about the “Sergeant” designation and assume here for the moment this is true, since I have no way to confirm it…although your name, but probably not your rank, may appear in the police log):

I’m disappointed that you would trot out your distinguished rank and service to this country in defense of a series of bad choices that evidently got you arrested the other night. You aren’t defending a principle by your posting here; you are defending a loud, illegal and clearly unruly drinking party in a residential neighborhood.

You questioned the idea of entitlement. “Where does that come from?” you queried. Well, you put your claim to entitlement right up front in your posting: you are a student on the GI bill and have served this country (with honor, I would like to think). So apparently you feel you are entitled to blow off steam at the end of a semester with a bunch of people you may or may not know, in a house that you do not own, on a street with families who actually maintain homes here and in flagrant and unremorseful violation of a town bylaw. Well, not to state the obvious…but in fact you are, in no way, so entitled.

I notice that you don’t mention in your posting the live band at the house, like it had no bearing on the subsequent actions by the police dept. I also notice you don’t mention what you did that got you arrested. APD is not in the habit of arresting people who are trying to help them clear out a party house. No, they arrest the people who are causing or fueling disruption in these situations. A true sergeant in the Marine Corps would have had respect for the police as they did their job. A true Marine would never have dishonored the service by suffering an arrest for the kind of behavior that you must have evidenced that night (assuming it actually happened). And he certainly would not have tried to defend it on a public forum as you have.

In an aside, did you know that the vast majority of students who pass through the town’s three colleges never get to have contact with the Amherst Police? Why is that? Because even though they probably have good times here and enjoy themselves outside their respective colleges, it doesn’t occur to them that they should be breaking a law to do that. But I guess that’s not the same for you.

I’m going to close now. But in closing, I have to remark on the final audacity you had to compare the pointlessness of this little brouhaha against the backdrop of a war. What nerve! What unmitigated gall! Overplayed your hand there. No, I don’t think anyone believes you were ever in the military. You’re no veteran. You’re just another wayward student, writing a satirical essay, railing at the unfairness of the universe, and in that pursuit, willing to sully the sanctified place that actual veterans of these last two wars should hold…in defense of a drunken party? Really? Seriously? What you should feel, buddy, is shame. And by the way, I don’t give a crap who you actually are or who you tell people you are. You’re a tool. Leave your neighbors alone or move.

Anonymous said...

To the latest poster:

Geoff here.

True, I didn't mention some things. However, my intention was not to write you a story. My intention was to point out what I believed to be untrue in the original blog entry. I at no time deceivingly omitted any events as you seem to think I have.

Your interpretation of my question on the concept of entitlement in this case was just absolutely wrong. Please, re-read that.

As the police were in our house, telling people to leave (as I, myself, and multiple other housemates were per their request), they arrested us. Most of the visitors had left, but they were still in the process of clearing out as we were being arrested.

I'll fully answer any questions pertaining to this matter, as well. I have no reason to lie here; my qualm with the APD is over. I'm not doubting their judgement or suggesting misuse of authority. I believe that from their perspective, I might understand their actions based on my training in security and detainee operations.

Oh, did I mention that I'm a veteran? As the mentioned paragraph in the initial blog did, your entire blog offended me. If you'd like to see proof, I fully invite you to come to my house (the blogger made my address very well known and included a picture) and allow me to show you. I can show you the sweat stains on my backpack I took to Afghanistan in 2009, my military ID, or perhaps some issued equipment I still have. You can look at my veteran license plates on my car while you walk up to the house. I won't bend over backwards to prove my service to you, so I'll leave it at that.

And to insult me for bringing up my veteran status as a "defense" of myself? I was slightly taken aback when my neighbor sees young men living in a house together in a college town and assumes by default that we've done nothing with our lives. Granted, it is an understandable stereotype. As I said to the original blogger, I'd like to ask that you know the facts before judging.

- Geoff Dempsey

Matawest said...

"I’m going to close now. But in closing, I have to remark on the final audacity you had to compare the pointlessness of this little brouhaha against the backdrop of a war. What nerve! What unmitigated gall! Overplayed your hand there. No, I don’t think anyone believes you were ever in the military. You’re no veteran. You’re just another wayward student, writing a satirical essay, railing at the unfairness of the universe, and in that pursuit, willing to sully the sanctified place that actual veterans of these last two wars should hold…in defense of a drunken party? Really? Seriously? What you should feel, buddy, is shame. And by the way, I don’t give a crap who you actually are or who you tell people you are. You’re a tool. Leave your neighbors alone or move."

This is just disrespectful........

Please do not question his status as a veteran...

As a former UMASS alumni I don't understand why the cops would ever be called at 10 PM? This could not be solved with a simple dialogue?

LarryK said...

Funny how you guys trot out your purported past in order to justify current bad behavior.

UMass is not proud of this kind of activity. Neither are the Marines.

Anonymous said...

Wow, OP! You really showed your cowardice and ignorance here. Are you seriously accusing a proud veteran of the armed forces, one who put his life on the line in Afghanistan so that you and you family can live safely in Amherst, of FAKING it just to get.. what? Respect? Are you serious?

Typical Amherst citizen, assuming everyone under the age of 30 is an entitled trust-fund child. That's rich, coming from a pompous-sounding townie who doesn't like being woken up late. I'm sorry, I must be confused about who is really acting like an entitled child.

LarryK said...

Just to double check, I faxed off a Freedom of Information request to National Personnel Records Center (NPRC) in St. Louis for a copy of Mr. Dempsey's service record.

Anonymous said...


Geoff here.

Regardless of your blatant lack of respect for me (a veteran, the rest of which seem to be worthy of your approval), I'll keep this quick, insult-free, and respectful.

You can either wait for a period of time (likely a long one) for the records to be returned to you or if you like, you could walk across the street to my house where I could show you: my military ID (picture ID), separation paperwork (yes, it says honorable discharge), pictures of me in Afghanistan/other Marine bases (in uniform) or any other type of proof you'd like.

As I said, I don't want to escalate this. I won't attempt to invade your rights or privacy. All I ask is that you show respect and reason and I'll do the same.

Anonymous said...

You would think being such a patriotic person yourself, you would appreciate what Sgt Dempsey has done for his country and for you. Instead of harassing him maybe try thanking him and let him enjoy his freedoms at 10 on a Saturday night in a college town... a bit ridiculous


LarryK said...

what I don't have respect for is throwing around veteran status as a means of justifying bad behavior.

Your house was previously cited back in late January for loud noise because you had a live band playing at 12:47 in the morning.

This time one of you trespassed to argue with one of your neighbors about them reporting that previous incident.

A concerned wife then called APD--this time to report someone on their property arguing with her husband.

When the cops arrived the noise (again, from a live band) was deemed loud and disruptive enough to garner yet another citation.

Because according to the police report: Guests confronted Officers about breaking the party up, stating they had "rights" and that it was a "birthday party".

Notice the officer used the word "confronted". As the Chair of the Amherst Select Board would say (did you see her Letter in the Collegian?) "Not OK!"

Anonymous said...

Wow!! Really? This is what you were so excited to get back to Sgt. Dempsey? To the neighbor who called the police on Sgt. Dempsey, rest assured that he did serve this great country of ours Honorably and is a combat veteran. I only hope that you are man enough to apologize to him on this forum when you receive your verification in the mail after questioning his integrity. Would have been much easier to walk across the street and ask him to show you his DD-214(Discharge Documents). But then again, walking across the street may have led you to find out just how much CHARACTER Sgt. Dempsey has. But hey, you are a tax paying citizen who has rights. You can call whomever you wish to complain about the couple of hours of sleep you may be missing. But rest assured, its not your insignificant amount of tax dollars that are paying for your rights. Its the men and women who voluntarily serve this country, many in harms way, who lose countless hours of sleep EVERY night, that are paying for your rights to call the police. You are a PATHETIC INDIVIDUAL!!

Sgt. J. Martinez
75th Ranger Regt. 3rd Batt.
82nd Airborne 325 AIR
2nd Infantry 5th Inf.

LarryK said...

Actually Sgt Martinez, I don't live anywhere near 370 Pelham Road. I'm on the other side of town.

I think the husband and wife who do live somewhere near to 370 Pelham Road are owed the apology.

Anonymous said...

As a Marine LCpl who served under Sgt Dempsey (then Cpl Dempsey) I would just like to say that he is an outstanding man and marine. He always held himself accountable to the higher standard all marines strive to achieve and was always there with a helping hand or word of encouragement whenever it was needed. I consider myself lucky to have served with Sgt Dempsey and am very proud to count myself among the people who can call him friend. I hope the people who instigated this entire debacle take a good long look in the mirror and ask themselves why it was necessary to take such drastic action against a great human being who has risked his life for their freedom.

With respect to all,

LCpl Christopher Brooks

LarryK said...

Well, I think the people who "instigated this entire debacle" were the ones who hired the band (for the second time) to play loud music in a residential neighborhood, trespassed onto a neighbors front porch in a hostile manner, and then were confrontational with responding Amherst police officers.

Anonymous said...

If you, Larry, are not the neighbor that called the police but are some random Amherst resident - who are you to have an opinion on this matter at all? Sure, you read the police report but you were not a witness to the noise, the altercation, or any part of the episode and yet you have unconditionaly taken the side of the house that called the police. You have not stopped to even consider that, in this case, it may not have been the proper decision - despite hearing evidence to prove unquivocally that the residents of 370 Pelham Rd are both respectful and deserving of respect.
Who are you to have such and opinion and make such a post online?

I think you are a grumpy old man. I think that young adults today represent a kind of minority whose human rights are disregarded by older Americans. The flippant attitude that we are default fools, unreasonable and irresponsible, is considered acceptable. It is neither acceptable nor is it true. Tell me honestly that, if a similarly raucous party was being held by a married couple in their thirties, the neighbor would have reacted the same way? Would he have attempted conversation with such a house? Even after the second instance of noise? I think I can safely assume he would have.

The former marine, though most likely angry in his own right for having been put through this ordeal, posted with the intent of peace - with suggestions such as communication and working out the problems between houses in a mature manner. He has been nothing but respectful since and yet both the original blogger (Larry) and the second anonymous poster - the "adults" - have responded with outright pompous and pretentious disrespect.

To speak about that which is entitled to either party is foregoing what is more important here - common courtesy. I do not mean just on the part of those looking to have a birthday party on a Saturday night. It seems like they had attempted courtesy but to poor reception. To imagine that one of the residents walked across the street to politely ask if they could be forewarned about a noise issue before any cops were called (seeing as there had been a previous incident) and were met by an already upset neighbor who was just waiting for 10:00pm to come around so that he could justifiably call the police is not at all unrealistic! Having been in college I have seen quite the same thing occur before. More often than not it is the "adults" in the situation that are the first to react poorly.

It is also the part of anyone who has chosen to live in society to be courteous. Yes, the party had loud music but the neighbor chose to be affected by it in the way that he was. We are required to live near others with different lifestyles than our own and we must all get along. Just because there is a law does not mean he had to jump on the opportunity to enforce it without first looking for more civil means of correcting the problem himself. Ex - walking the 100 feet to say something to them. Is any Amherst resident 'entitled' to call the cops? - of course. Should you? - No! Not until other options have been exhausted.

How about instead, Larry and the neighbor across the street both learn to have some tolerance for the culture of the younger generation amongst whom you have chosen to live, or you both move. If it's not them, it's just going to be someone else - us blasted kids just keep on coming and you're in a college town buddy, get over yourselves.

LarryK said...

"Tolerance for the culture of the younger generation." Yeah, like you speak for an entire generation. As an Anon. Perfect.

Anonymous said...

clearly larry is a douche. you cant win with him, in his mind he will always be correct.

LarryK said...


Anonymous said...


Geoff here.

After re-reading my initial comment, I can not find one piece of text in which I'm "throwing around veteran status as a means of justifying bad behavior." First off, I don't consider it bad behavior in the slightest. We had friends over. It got loud. We dispersed when the police told us (yes, this included people gathering belongings/equipment).

The reason I decided to bring up my status is because you specifically mentioned "While young adults their age are fighting and dying in a far off country, these boys are hastling their neighbors..." This is hilarious to me. You say you always double check? Well why don't you double check before accusing somebody of lying? Waiting for a faxed document is not an active way of checking for something especially when I've explicitly invited you (an offer that still stands) to come to my residence so I can show you. At first, I was willing to take steps to prove it to you, but decided that I have no reason to prove my service to a townie who seems to not understand that he lives in a college town. My invitation to you includes me walking as far as my front door for you.

And if you double check everything, you may want to see about the musicians who were playing at our house. They were not a hired band as you mentioned. They were musicians in a house who picked them up and began to play.

If you continue to refuse to accept the fact that I'm a veteran, I'll just have to assume that you don't want to find the truth (which, obviously, debunks the very first statement you made in this blog).

And thanks to all of my military brothers supporting me. This bond never dies.

LarryK said...

Thanks for your service and that of your brothers.

But please, keep the noise down.

Anonymous said...

LarryK said...
"Thanks for your service and that of your brothers.

But please, keep the noise down."

Well said, Larry.

Anonymous said...


We will. All I ask is that everyone take reasonable steps to have fun yet not disturb their neighbors.

- Geoff