HOBOKEN – Move over, St. Patrick’s celebrations — you have competition.
Halloween weekend in Hoboken this year had crime statistics on par with the city’s infamous annual St. Patrick’s Day celebrations of the past, police revealed this week. Some of the factors that came into play: Halloween took place on a weekend with pleasant weather, the New York Mets were in the World Series, and the change back to Standard Time kept the local bars open an additional hour.
Police compared it to the first Saturday in March, before St. Patrick’s Day, when groups hold pub crawls. In 2011 during that weekend, 300 tickets were issued, 136 ambulance calls were made, and 34 arrests took place on the holiday weekend. The situation is improving somewhat: This past year, 95 tickets were issued, with 39 ambulance calls and a total of 11 arrests.
As he recited the stats during the City Council meeting on Wednesday, Nov. 4, Police Chief Kenneth Ferrante made it clear Halloween is becoming a danger-prone weekend.
“This became a dangerous situation on Saturday night [Oct. 31] and it’s growing a life of its own,” he told the council. “Halloween in Hoboken is becoming Lepre-con 2.”
>From 8 p.m. to 6 a.m., a 10-hour period, the police force responded to 196 service calls, the volume the department usually deals with in a 24-hour period on a typical Saturday. The police chief said pedestrian and vehicular traffic during Halloween weekend from Oct. 31 to Nov. 1 matched that of Lepre-con Day. Three arrests were made on Friday night and 10 on Saturday. Ferrante said more would have been made had additional officers been on duty.
In addition to a number of notable crimes like a police officer being tasered at a pizzeria and another getting a blow to the face which required stitches, the crime count was as follows: 46 intoxicated/disorderly people, 35 traffic-related incidents, 16 medical calls, 12 noise complaints, six assaults, six motor vehicle accidents, five street fights, and three criminal mischief cases.
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