Homecoming weekend ‘busy’ for local police


Police authority

By Ryan Chodora

Homecoming weekend gathered a crowd and crime this weekend.

The DeKalb Police and Fire departments had to increase their staffs over the weekend to keep up with the increased activity in DeKalb, bringing in additional help.

“It was an extremely busy weekend for law enforcement,” said DeKalb Police Cmdr. Jason Leverton. “Much of both nights, virtually every police officer from every participating agency was busy handling calls for service, investigating crimes, proactively patrolling, monitoring busy areas or processing arrests.”

There were 17 arrests made Friday, 34 arrests Saturday and 30 arrests Sunday. Arrests from the weekend varied from unlawful possession of firearms to retail theft. Sunday morning, three people were taken into custody for allegedly being involved with a shooting incident on the 700 block of Regent Drive after a gun was discharged at a party.

Twenty-four city ordinance charges, like noise violations and possession of pot, were made throughout the weekend. Aside from the NIU Police Department and the DeKalb Police and Fire departments working together, the DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office, Sycamore Police Department and Illinois State Police were in DeKalb assisting with operations.

Chad McNett, community relations officer for the DeKalb Police Department, said this year’s Homecoming weekend was a busy one, but still routine in terms of activity and variety of arrests made. McNett also said the police department relies on student cooperation to create a safer environment.

“This past weekend was busy and we needed every single person who was working and/or volunteering,” McNett said. “Without the extra, it would have been rough.”

McNett said seven tips were made via the iWatch DeKalb application over the weekend, an increase over other weekends. iWatch allows users to anonymously report tips to the police on a mobile phone app or on the computer.

The DeKalb Fire Department creates a citywide instant action plan for each event throughout the weekend. DeKalb Fire Chief Eric Hicks said each event is properly staffed and precautionary measures are taken. The DeKalb Fire Department increased their on-duty staff Thursday.

“All the events that are scheduled throughout the weekend are very well planned and very well thought out by all entities involved,” Hicks said.