Saturday, April 21, 2012

Now we're talking!

APD downtown Amherst

Town Manager John Musante just tweeted (yes, he's on Twitter) about his "ride along" with APD last night.  Now we have to get him, like his predecessor Larry Shaffer, to start blogging--or at the very least get on Facebook--to give us the "who, what, when, where, why and how."

And of course, do a ride along with AFD.

Rode along with Amherst Police Friday night. APD's unsung heroes working to keep us all safe. Thank you.
He picked a good night, as it sounded from scanner traffic like an all too typical frisky Friday.  State police also set up a DUI roadblock in Hadley and bagged five potential killers on the road (out of 500 cars checked, or 1%).  And the Daily Hampshire Gazette issued a rather stern editorial today about the slobfest at Puffers Pond on Patriots Day.

The tide is turning...

A few hours after I posted this a "newbie" posted the following over on UMasshoops, a fanboy listserve that is having a lively discussion (for a change) on the whole UMass party hardy culture in view of the recent Puffers Pond incident.  This is priceless:

Posted: Sat Apr 21, 2012 3:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

"As a student who attends this fine university, I can safely say that there is just about nowhere any students can go to have a good time and drink. Even the bars as I have read in this thread are kept at half capacity by the fire dept.

It's honestly getting pretty ridiculous how often cops are around. I have seen two cops on horses just sitting around on campus walking home from class on a Monday afternoon. For what? Its becoming a zero tolerance police state around here and honestly it sucks. I understand they are trying to change the image of the school but at what cost? Students are becoming increasingly annoyed with this university in more ways than one but I'll stick to this topic.

I am sure most posters on this board are UMass alums and I am also sure many of your fondest memories of UMass were partying on the weekends. I know that is the case for my father. He doesn't tell me stories about sitting in class and he turned out just fine. Why try to end the one of the best things this school has going for it?

The reason situations like Puffers Pond happen is because once we get a little freedom a chance to let loose we do it or else we miss our chance. This weekend they literally shut down streets and there was a cop just hanging out at the back of Puffers Pond. Where does this all end"


Anonymous said...

Not clear how they are unsung heroes? First, they are paid to do a job and they do it. Doing a good job is what we expect of anyone. Second, their praises are sung all the time.

LarryK said...

Been busted lately?

Anonymous said...

Been to Town Meeting lately? We have Town Meeting members who believe that they should ride around on bicycles.

They are "unsung heroes" in Amherst, believe me.

We have residents who do not believe that anyone has to apply force to anyone else in order to protect the community.

So, yes, "unsung heroes" is apt HERE.

Anonymous said...

Cant wait for him to do a ride along with AFD. How about during the next Mullins concert, or at least before the students leave.

Anonymous said...

Not so appreciated - how many of them have left for better paying, less active, and no restrictions on time off departments. They have, and still continue, to lose many professional cops to other agencies.

Anonymous said...

The police initiated the bicycle force: it allows them to quickly and quietly get to places they can't access in a car.

Larry, does the APD have a ride-along program with the bicycle force? Are you interested in riding along with them some time?

- Your Friend

LarryK said...

Yeah, I mentioned it to the Chief last year after my second (motorized) ride along and he did not seem to think it would be a problem (other than my keeping up with the younger guys).

Ed said...

Did any of you schmucks think about the fact that many of the police officers are over 30, some over 40 and don't want heart attacks?

And being on the bike patrol not only gets you outdoors but some exercise while "on the clock" -- ever think that far ahead?

As I understand it, it is the OFFICER'S discretion as to weather conditions as well -- or at least it used to be. And when you see them out in some pretty marginal weather, by their own call, they have to be getting something out of this that they see worthwhile.

Ed said...

One other thing Larry -- do you have the RFP for their bikes -- eg what they are, what they have on them (for biking, not law enforcement) -- tires and the rest?

Cops are my size. I like to think the town isn't buying anything overly fancy or expensive -- or breakable/high maintenance, etc.

Where could I buy a "cop bike"?
I don't want it to *say* "police" on it -- trust me -- but I want one that has the rugged super-heavy-duty "stuff" on it. I don't care about color or anything else, just something that won't collapse under me....

A cop bike probably is the only thing I wouldn't destroy -- I do weigh almost an eighth of a ton -- as do some of the officers -- we aren't the 150 lb metrosexuals whom they seem to build most bikes for.

He**, something with brakes big enough to stop me -- one of the reasons I gave up biking was that I kept having brakes melting and it was irresponsible to operate a vehicle that you can't stop.

Like I said, the cops weigh what I do, and they manage to run their bikes down a hill and stop it at the bottom.

LarryK said...

To me "over 30, some over 40" are still "young guys."

Anonymous said...

I have yet to see a bike cop that weighs what Ed does.

Ed said...

Larry, people in their 30s and 40s are dying of heart attacks.

Andrew Britebart was 43.
Rumor is that it was not his first.

And to the schmuck with the ad hominum, there are bike cops (possibly not in Amherst) who are 6'6" or more -- exactly what do you think they weigh?

Not that you ever let yourself be confused with the facts....