City touts LepreCon-related crime decrease; arrests down 50 percent since parade was cancelled
Mar 03, 2014 | 759 views | 0 0 comments | 26 26 recommendations | email to a friend | print
HOBOKEN – Historically one of Hoboken’s most raucous days, the city’s annual St. Patrick’s Day celebration resulted in fewer arrests and ambulance calls than in recent years, according to data released by the city on Monday.

On Saturday, when two popular bar crawls (both known as LepreCon) took over downtown Hoboken, the city recorded only 15 arrests, 51 ambulance calls, 63 ordinance violations and 288 police calls for service.

Since 2011, the final year that the city allowed an official parade to be held, arrests have fallen 56 percent (from 34), ambulance calls have fallen 63 percent (from 136), ordinance violations are down 78 percent (from 292), and police calls are down 45 percent (from 525).

Mayor Dawn Zimmer refused to permit the St. Patrick’s Day to continue after 2011 on the grounds that it constituted a significant public safety risk. Bar crawls like LepreCon, which the city cannot regulate, replaced the parade. Zimmer did offer parade organizers the chance to hold the event on a weeknight in the hopes that it would attract fewer partygoers, but the committee refused, resulting in an ongoing standstill.

On Monday Zimmer attributed the decrease in crime to a police strategy of containing those festivities largely to the southeast part of town.

“In prior years when there was a parade, it was a city-wide challenge to keep order, but now that activity is concentrated in the southeast area of town, it is a much more manageable situation,” she said in a statement.

Zimmer commended the police, fire and volunteer ambulance departments for their work Saturday, along with other city offices and the police departments from the Port Authority, NJ Transit, Stevens Institute of Technology, Union City and Westfield, N.J. – Dean DeChiaro

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