392 Alcohol-Related Arrests Made During Arizona State's First Weekend of the New SemesterBy Russell Westerholm, UniversityHerald Reporter
In its second year in existence, the Tempe Police Department's (TPD) "Safe and Sober" campaign made 392 arrests over the weekend at or near Arizona State University (ASU).
According to the Phoenix New Times, the task force was designed to increase police presence when ASU, an annual top party school, returned for the fall semester. Last weekend was the first since classes resumed Aug. 21.
This year, the task force tallied 146 arrests for DUI, 112 for underage alcohol consumption, 35 for underage alcohol possession and 99 for other assorted offenses. In its first year, the Safe and Sober unit made 371 arrests in the first weekend of the ASU fall semester and more than 1,300 in a span of three weekends.
This year, the TPD's task force is getting help from 17 agencies through Sept. 6, thanks to a grant from the Governor's Office of Highway Safety.
"We have more agencies - quite a few more agencies - participating this year," Mike Pooley, a TPD lieutenant, told the New Times.
The Arizona State Sun Devils kick off their football season Thursday night at home, which will only likely exacerbate another weekend of hard partying.
"Thursday's football game will be a big predictor of how things go," Pooley said.
The Arizona Republic reported that party attendees on the 18th and 19th floors of an apartment building threw beer bottles toward a squad car Saturday night. While no arrests were made and no one was hurt, Pooley said that is an "extremely dangerous" situation that can get out of hand easily.
With the amount of participating agencies nearly doubling from a year ago, the Safe and Sober task force was able to do a "welcome walk" this year. The task force informed students that underage drinking laws would be strictly enforced. The police also outlined how to make a formal noise complaint.