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Fewer arrests at Utah State’s infamous Halloween party

By Hannah McDonald
Nov. 6, 2016

Ten people were arrested at Utah State University’s annual Halloween party — a four-year low, according to police.

Utah State Police Captain Steve Milne is unsure why police made fewer arrests at this year’s Howl, but he said he hopes word is getting out that the party, which draws thousands of Utah State students and guests from across the region, is not the place to be for students who are drinking.

“When you have 30 police officers spread out between two buildings, your chances of getting caught are going to be increased a lot,” Milne said. “I don’t know if the word has gotten out on that. We’ll see. If crime rates continue to stay low for the next few years, then I guess so.”

The drop in arrests is part of a four-year trend. Last year, police made 16 arrests. In 2014, 23 attendees were arrested, and in 2013, law enforcement arrested 28 partygoers.

Emi Facer, the student director of the Howl, said the lower crime rates may correspond to party planners’ decision to host two identical dances in the Fieldhouse and the ballroom.

“I think having the two dances and having different performances kept people engaged,” she said. “I think when people were engaged, it helped it to be more safe as well.”

Facer and Milne agreed this year’s event was more mellow than they expected it to be. The party, which traditionally has been one of the largest Halloween celebrations in the Mountain West, has developed a reputation over the years for its debauchery.

“Overall it was a much quieter night than in previous years, so we were certainly happy with that,” Milne said.