Boston Police Arrest 21 BC Students
Published: Monday, September 25, 2000
Updated: Wednesday, January 9, 2013 18:01
Police arrested 21 Boston College students last weekend as a result of the Boston Police Department’s (BPD) Cops in Shops program and a zero-tolerance policy for unruly off-campus parties.
District 14 of the Boston Police Department, which includes Brighton and Allston, has teamed up with the Alcohol Beverage Control Commission (ABCC) in an effort to “discourage loud parties, underage drinking and inappropriate behavior,” said Jack Dunn, Director of Public Affairs.
Robert Sherwood, dean for student development, said the Cops in Shops program places undercover cops in bars and liquor stores. When underage students with fake IDs try to buy alcohol or go to a bar they are arrested.
“It’s a bad idea. It’s setting kids up, like entrapment,” said Aidan Hamm, A&S ’03.
The number of arrests was especially high this past weekend because “BPD officers or ABCC agents were placed in all liquor stores and in all bars throughout Brighton and Allston on Friday and Saturday nights,” Dunn said.
Because of these efforts a grand total of 59 arrests were made in District 14, including the 21 BC students, Dunn said.
Sherwood said that 10 of these arrests occurred at The Avenue, a bar on Commonwealth Avenue, when police executed what many students refer to as a “bar raid.” This is when cops enter a bar and ask for patron’s IDs, then arrest people on the spot if the IDs are fake.
“I want BC students to understand that they are cracking down and are clearly trying to send a message to students early in the semester,” Dunn said.
Those arrested will face penalties at both the state and university level.
Sherwood said that a new system of punishment in Massachusetts gives students what’s called a “pre-trial probation.” This lasts for six months until the case is dismissed, and no formal record remains. Students may be forced to attend Alcoholics Anonymous meetings and must complete 20 hours of community service.
Sherwood made it clear that BC will impose a $100 fine on all arrested individuals and put them on the Deffered Housing Suspension List until they turn 21. Parents are notified and more community service must be completed.
It is also possible, Sherwood said, that BC will turn the fake IDs over to the Department of Motor Vehicles, who in turn could suspend the accused person’s driver’s license for six months.
The BPD District 14 Newsletter calls this program an “aggressive, pro-active police response” that will continue on into mid-October.
Dunn explained that the BPD has been enforcing the zero-tolerance and false identification laws more stringently in the Allston-Brighton area since the death of Scott Krueger in 1998. Krueger, then a freshman at MIT, died due to complications from alcohol poisoning. “Efforts have been heightened at late as a result of the Scott Krueger incident at MIT,” Dunn said.
“We don’t want our students to die,” Sherwood said. He felt the Krueger case changed the atmosphere of the city of Boston, and universities and police are now taking a “preventative standpoint” in regards to alcohol.