Fewer arrests at Spring Fling

A dozen Yale Police Department officers were stationed on Old Campus during Spring Fling to maintain order.
A dozen Yale Police Department officers were stationed on Old Campus during Spring Fling to maintain order. Photo by Emilie Foyer.

While students celebrated at Spring Fling, Yale’s police department, security and concert staff worked to maintain a sense of order amidst Old Campus parties and alcohol-fueled mischief.

The Yale Police Department only deployed about 12 officers to Old Campus during Spring Fling, but the department’s head of patrol, Lt. Joseph Vitale, said that one student was arrested, and seven were transported to Yale-New Haven Hospital for alcohol detoxification. Several more students were ticketed for misdemeanors, and at least three Old Campus suites were raided for parties, according to witness reports. Overall, intoxicated students and police raids this Spring Fling were not as rowdy as last year’s, YPD Lt. Michael Patten said Wednesday.

“Overall, I’d have to say that Spring Fling went pretty well,” Vitale said Tuesday night.

All 10 students interviewed duirng the event said they thought security was less strict than last year. One, who wished to remain anonymous to avoid repercussions for carrying alcohol, even said that he was able to successfully bring alcohol onto Old Campus despite concert staff checking at every entrance.

The one student arrest included a misdemeanor summons for disorderly conduct, criminal impersonation and interfering with an officer, Vitale said.

Other students reported receiving tickets for disorderly conduct, resisting arrest, and serving alcohol to minors.

The YPD was not immediately able to provide more details about ticketing and the number of suites entered.

Last year, the YPD issued a total of 19 infraction tickets at Spring Fling — 14 for the possession of alcohol by a minor, two for public drinking, two for creating a public disturbance and one for serving alcohol to minors.

Unlike police raids last year, which were criticized by students as overly intrusive, Vitale said on the scene Tuesday night that police officers only entered suites in response to very loud noise levels, or an obvious infraction of Yale policy. These policies included a ban on parties, more specifically “any social gathering of students in a student room that includes more than the residents of that room,” according to a pre-Spring Fling e-mail from Dean of Student Affairs Marichal Gentry.

But as in past years, Yale security and police officers were also stationed at all entrances and exits to Old Campus. In addition to checking student identification, concert staff checked bags and pockets for alcohol.

Yale’s undergraduate regulations state that any gathering of more than 20 students in student housing must be approved by a residential college dean or master.

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