Quiet time for cops during marine festival

Nanaimo Marine Festival continues to evolve into a family affair with police having a relatively quiet time the entire weekend.

Nanaimo Marine Festival continues to evolve into a family affair with police having a relatively quiet time the entire weekend.

Const. Gary O’Brien, Nanaimo RCMP spokesman, said arrests were down significantly from previous years, with 15 people taken to the Nanaimo detachment Saturday night. Eight people were arrested Friday night.

“We would have expected more Saturday since that is the height of marine festival,” he said. “The majority were for public intoxication. There were no major incidents.”

Police presence was significant Saturday night with more than 10,000 people at Maffeo Sutton Park to take in the fireworks, but police had little trouble.

“One of the key reasons for the safe night was we had choke points – only two entrances into the park – and everyone is searched. If they don’t want to be searched, they cannot get in,” said O’Brien. “It’s become more family oriented, but we did  have a few liquor pour outs. No charges were laid unless it was way over the top.”