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Cops call in backup for Chico Halloween

ChicoHalloweenweb.jpg
A Chico police officer asks questions to a student during the 2013 Halloween. Orion file Photo

With Halloween fast approaching, University Police Department and Chico Police Department are preparing for an action-packed weekend.

Chico police made 99 arrests from Thursday night to Sunday last year, 84 of which were alcohol-related, according to a previous Orion article. This year, officers are trying to reduce those numbers even further.

Corrine Beck, Lieutenant of the University Police Department, said she realizes there will be an increase in the normal activity because of Halloween falling on a Friday.

She also said officers on the street will have expanded duties and patrols. They requested 33 officers from other California State University campuses. Chico State police will also call on the California State University Police Critical Response Unit, a team available during busy times to help keep civil order.

“We plan to have the officers much more visible,” she said. “We also plan to have a lot more officers out in corridors that are not technically Chico State campus properties but have heavy flow of students, like on Warner and Ivy streets.”

Chico Police Department will also increase its presence throughout the city over the weekend, according to Lt. Dave Britt.

“Were kind of all-hands-on-deck during this time of year,” he said. “We’ve added an extra shift of officers as well as bringing in outside agency help”

Officers from law enforcement agencies in Butte and Glenn counties will be Chico to aid in enforcement.

Rumors spread that there was the possibility of gangs using Chico Halloween celebrations for initiation. Britt said, to his knowledge, the rumors are unfounded.

“We have no credible intelligence telling us that there will be any gang activity in Chico during Halloween,” he said. “We have more officers on duty during this time than literally any other time during the year, so if they were considering doing something this weekend, it would be, frankly, quite foolish.”

Beck said that students should use their instincts to avoid dangerous situations and help others to the best of their ability.

“We hope people have fun,” she said. “But, we’re not going to tolerate any violence. If (students) do see something that bothers them, they should not hesitate to find one of the many officers out and come tell us. We will always do our best to help them in that situation.”

David McVicker can be reached at [email protected] or @DavidPMcVicker on Twitter.

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