85 cited over weekend

Despite university and city officials calling Friday a “quiet night” after participating in a neighborhood walk, they are hoping a series of incidents this weekend sets an example for those who choose to drink underage.

During what police called an “initiative directed at underage alcohol consumption and illegal ‘House Parties,'” Eau Claire police officers issued 85 citations and made five arrests Friday night and Saturday morning, according to a department press release.

The majority of the citations were for underage drinking, but also included citations for disorderly conduct, loud party and selling without a license for party hosts.

Information regarding the incidents came just two days after city officials, university administration and community members canvassed areas near the UW-Eau Claire campus as part of a neighborhood walk.

Sgt. Bruce VanValkenberg said such a level of mass activity is still “pretty unusual,” explaining that one of the larger incidents was a 21st birthday party that had been publicly advertised in the neighborhood.

“(Outside of the 85 citations), it was a very calm night,” VanValkenberg said. “The activity level was pretty quiet.”

Jodi Thesing-Ritter, associate dean of Student Development, said that while she was encouraged by the lack of mass citations up until this point, she has seen at least six or seven detox cases this semester.

“I really do get the sense that things are getting better,” Thesing-Ritter said, “but there’s still a lot of work to do.”