Party patrol on the prowl again

Throwing a big Halloween bash became a little more difficult this weekend, especially if underage drinkers were around. The party patrol, a combination of University, Minneapolis and Hennepin County police, started again Friday in response to the beginning of Halloween parties. One student, public relations junior Adriane Marten , said her party at her Marcy Holmes house on Friday was broken up by 26 officers. The police told her they received a complaint from a neighbor and responded. They checked peopleâÄôs identifications and gave minors to everyone under 21, she said. Marten also said it would have been difficult for anyone to run because the patrol surrounded the house with 11 squad cars and a van to take people away. âÄúI donâÄôt think weâÄôll be throwing any more parties as long as we live here,âÄù she said. Marten said she and two of her roommates expect to receive gross misdemeanors for selling alcohol without a license. Although the patrol usually tracks parties at the beginning of the year, it was delayed by the Republican National Convention and personnel changes, University Deputy Police Chief Chuck Miner said . Minneapolis police Lt. Isaac Delugo said the patrol does not aim to break up all parties, but they look for the large house parties that disturb the neighborhoods. The patrol consists of 20 to 25 more officers than the 6 to 8 on a standard night, he said. âÄúIf they come up to a home that may have 50, 60, 100, 200 people in it, obviously they cannot handle it themselves,âÄù he said. âÄúThere have even been issues where the doors are locked and the windows are closed and they canâÄôt get in but thereâÄôs activity all around the place. The officers would meet and then a strategy would be developed in how to effectively handle the situation.âÄù Delugo said he believes the patrol has been effective in past years. âÄúWe have noticed very strongly that the next day, and maybe even during the week and maybe the weekends after, that things quiet down quite a bit,âÄù Delugo said. âÄúSo I believe this is a great bang for the buck.âÄù Some of the âÄúbuckâÄù comes from a local neighborhood. Melissa Bean, Marcy Holmes Neighborhood Association director , said the association gave a $4,000 grant for overtime police patrol. âÄúThere are definitely pockets of the neighborhood where this is a huge concern,âÄù Bean said. âÄúThere are chronic party houses and this is a good way to nip it in the bud at the beginning of the school year and then we usually donâÄôt have any problems.âÄù She said the densely populated neighborhood has to be respectful of one another and they donâÄôt usually have many problems. In addition to the money from Marcy Holmes, the city received a $5,000 grant from the Minnesota Department of Safety âÄúfor enforcement of underage drinking laws in 2nd Precinct to address âÄòparty housesâÄô in University of Minnesota area.âÄù Marten said she believes these resources could be used in a better way. âÄúI understand the need to prevent people from throwing parties and selling to minors, but I donâÄôt think it was necessary to have 26 cops, especially with all the other kind of crimes that happen in Minneapolis,âÄù she said. Another neighborhood in the patrol area is Southeast Como , and neighborhood coordinator James De Sota said the party patrol is an unfortunate necessity. âÄúGiven the nature of what transpires in the neighborhoods, I think there need to be party patrols at this point,âÄù he said. âÄúI donâÄôt think anybody likes having them, but I think they are necessary and they do a lot of good not just for the weekend or the days that theyâÄôre active. It serves as a nice general reminder.âÄù The number of citations issued by the Party Patrol will be available Monday afternoon after the police compile their individual bookings.