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Halloween mischief is restrained

Officers arrest four and pass out 11 citations, most for pot
 Posted: 2:00 AM November 02, 2012

About 1,000 Halloween partiers packed Ashland's downtown Plaza Wednesday after dark, but police saw less of the notorious behavior that typically haunts the night.

Ashland police arrested four people and passed out 11 citations, mostly for possession of marijuana, during the celebration Wednesday, said Deputy Chief Corey Falls.

Those statistics are citywide, but most of the action was generated by Halloween celebrators, he said.

One person was arrested on charges of first-degree disorderly conduct and interfering with a police officer after standing on the Plaza fountains, Falls said.

Three other drivers were arrested and cited for driving under the influence of intoxicants.

Six people were cited for possession of less than an ounce of marijuana, three minors were cited for drinking alcohol, one person was cited for carrying an open container of alcohol in public, and another was cited for scattering rubbish (urinating in public), Falls said.

"We feel we've got a pretty good handle on Halloween now. This year was pretty consistent with how it's been the last three or four years," Falls said. "We also just gave a lot of warnings ... trying to create an environment where people have an opportunity to understand what they can and can't do."

About 30 police officers — from Ashland, Talent, Phoenix and Medford — were on patrol in Ashland for Halloween.

Last year, police handed out 17 citations — mostly for possession of marijuana — and arrested 13 people.

In 2009, when Halloween fell on a Saturday, police arrested 29 people, largely for similar offenses. In 2008, police made 37 arrests on Halloween.

Falls said he doesn't know whether Halloween falling on school nights the past three years is responsible for the drop-off in arrests and calmer crowds, or whether it's a bolstered police presence paying off.

"It's a very collaborative effort between all the assisting agencies that have been helping us ... including the high school, and the college has done a very good job with their students," Falls said. "We all do our best to make sure things are safe."

Reach reporter Sam Wheeler at 541-499-1470 or email

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