March 3 Media Update at 5 p.m. from Town of Amherst, UMass

AMHERST, Mass. – Town of Amherst and University of Massachusetts officials said a combination of extensive planning, coordinated public safety efforts and cooperative students helped ensure a safe and peaceful day in the town and on campus.

The primary goal of providing a safe environment free from any large-scale disturbances was accomplished successfully. The Town of Amherst will maintain vigilance tonight to ensure the safety of the community. Police officers staged in various locations within the community reported cooperation, respect and positive communication with students.

“Once again, the efforts of the town and university have maintained the safety of our community and prevented any significant issues during the course of the day,” said Town Manager Paul Bockelman. “Our success in addressing this challenge underscores the importance of our partnership with the university.”

“A key factor today was the cooperation displayed by students at the Mullins Center concert and off campus,” said Enku Gelaye, UMass Amherst vice chancellor for student affairs and campus life. “I congratulate our students, including our Team Positive Presence volunteers, for helping make today a safe and peaceful event.”

More than 3,700 UMass students attended a free concert at the Mullins Center, where UMass Police placed two students in protective custody. Last year, 2,200 students attended the concert.

The Amherst Police Department, which was assisted by police from a number of western Massachusetts communities and the State Police, reported one arrest for assault and battery on a police officer and disorderly conduct. Police responded to eight noise complaints and two reports of fights. Officers also dispersed a large gathering near South Prospect Street and Northampton Road.

Last year, Amherst Police made no arrests and the UMass Police made one arrest.

Amherst Fire and UMass Emergency Medical Services treated 18 persons at the Mullins Center concert and four were transported to Cooley Dickinson Hospital for intoxication, while another was taken to the hospital for hypothermic symptoms. A sixth student was later transported from a dining commons to Cooley Dickinson to be treated for intoxication.

The Amherst Fire Department also responded to another call on campus.

Last year, seven persons were treated at the concert and one was transported to Cooley Dickinson Hospital for intoxication.

Among those working to promote a safe event were 14 UMass undergraduates from Team Positive Presence. The volunteers from the Student Government Association and the Off Campus Student Center served as role models and encouraged students to enjoy the concert in a responsible manner.