Police arrest 27 at Big Up Fest - Columbia-Greene Media: News

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Police arrest 27 at Big Up Fest

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Posted: Tuesday, August 13, 2013 12:30 am | Updated: 4:12 pm, Mon Sep 9, 2013.

Police arrested 27 people, ranging in age from 17 to 53, on drug charges throughout the three-day Big Up Festival in Claverack over the weekend.

"In the past, we have had drug-related issues associated with this festival,” said New York State Police Troop K Commander Major Michael Kopy in a statement released Monday. “This year, we were determined to take steps to reduce the amount of illicit narcotics entering Columbia County and to make the festival as safe as possible. Working with our law enforcement partners and the festival organizers, we accomplished this task in a number of ways.”

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  • USMC1775 posted at 7:48 pm on Mon, Aug 19, 2013.

    USMC1775 Posts: 73

    My nephew got hooked on the "hard drugs" after being a recreational pot user. I saw the devastation it did too my sister, my parents, my family. My nephew stealing from his parents and grandparents, etc.......Stealing money, jewelry, electronics, anything he could that he could sell/trade for drugs. I have no problems with the cops going after the drug users/dealers. The dealers are the reason people get hooked and may cause families like mine to be in a death spin for years. I am friends with several cops, and I hear and understand their stories of what they deal with. All of you anti-cop people out there make me laugh, you don't know how good you have it. Without the police, all of you anti-cop haters would be victims!!

  • elaine posted at 1:00 pm on Mon, Aug 19, 2013.

    elaine Posts: 379

    This would be a good time for an in depth analysis to be made of the event to be able to determine the pros and cons of what occurred. It could be a valuable tool to examine and fine tool the parts that didn't work out or gave it the bad reputation. Although many are relieved that it is now over, we can't deny that it has been a learning experience. Was it worth it? Maybe maybe not. Did the numbers attending and having a great time being there outweigh the problems and costs? We have to learn from the experience to determine if it will in this area again.
    The actions of the police presence at the event or on the routes to and from need to be reviewed as well to make sure their actions were appropiate and not in excess. Perhaps this would be a good topic of debate in the upcoming elections. All in all it's done and seems like everybody survived. Breathe.

  • Common Sense Gent posted at 3:32 pm on Sat, Aug 17, 2013.

    Common Sense Gent Posts: 107

    I agree on this set of issues with Little Warlike One, Tazer and others who sense that the police actions were in essence out of control and more focused on persecution than prosecution based on public safety. Civil seizure and police entitlements is one of the great corruption scandals of our society and is succeeding in states as diverse as Texas to Pennsylvania in converting Sheriffs and local police into fascist police states with the legal right to steal and appropriate property without proving criminal charges. All those wonderful tools for "going after the bad guys" and "terrorists" can also be turned around on ordinary citizens, and when that happens the constitutional weakness of the reasoning behind the expedient adoption of such laws be it by Giuliani (who pushed the abuse of the RICO statutes along with Spitzer), Cuomo, or Perry or Corbit, becomes readily apparent.

  • mrh posted at 2:15 pm on Fri, Aug 16, 2013.

    mrh Posts: 1

    Every article about this event had to do with drug arrests. I agree with Mr. Kleinbaum. Too much negativity...But that is what makes news today. Sad

  • jkesq posted at 5:03 pm on Thu, Aug 15, 2013.

    jkesq Posts: 8

    This was a great festival with great music and great people. There were vistors from far and wide. I spoke to people who traveled from Maine and Virginia among others to go to the festival. There was lots of local business involvement and community participation. I hope it happens again next year.

    Incidentally, the percentage of arrests at other events (29 DWIs at one Live at Five), 175 arrests at Dave Matthews, 250 arrests at Phish) is quite abit lower at the Big Up. There were NO violence arrests from fights etc.

    The negativity is completely unwarranted.

    James Kleinbaum
    Attorney at Law

  • neutralparty posted at 8:56 am on Wed, Aug 14, 2013.

    neutralparty Posts: 128

    Lets get some things straight (someone already hit on the planning board, so I'll move on). First, the entity putting the event on pays for the police assigned there, EMS stationed there, etc... Second, the arrests in this report show the charges as well, these were not low level "users", they're facing felonies. The UPM tickets are violations and therefore, will not give the "youngster a criminal record." Do your research.

  • tazer posted at 7:31 am on Wed, Aug 14, 2013.

    tazer Posts: 95

    Police making their income off kids.

  • stonepound posted at 1:27 am on Wed, Aug 14, 2013.

    stonepound Posts: 131

    I am frankly more concerned with the no show county attorney jobs and other shenanigans.

  • ghent12 posted at 3:06 pm on Tue, Aug 13, 2013.

    ghent12 Posts: 29

    Recreational non-violent drug users are easy targets. Undercover troopers on the grounds" is very intrusive for a public festival. This reflects badly on the state police.

  • jeffersonian posted at 2:04 pm on Tue, Aug 13, 2013.

    jeffersonian Posts: 74

    Claverack Taxpayer, it wasn't Andrews' idea, nor was Captain Bartlett a "supporter", give us all a break from the politics. Events go to planning boards (not town boards) to get approval. How about take some time to learn how your town works. Andrews, Bartlett & the rest of the board & county made the area safe...comprende?

    Of course, if you're a political operative, hack, or tribal member, there's no hope for you to see reality or be honest.

  • localgrrl posted at 12:31 pm on Tue, Aug 13, 2013.

    localgrrl Posts: 1

    these arrests were not made AT the big up! I live locally and use Preusser rd and Martindale rd daily, the police had set themselves up at either end of martindale rd as well as Preusser rd and were harassing travellers in the hopes they would get lucky and sure enough they did! It would be great if the Register Star reported in a more fair and accurate fashion. You also could have used a much better photo! You succeeded in putting a negative spin on something that also had a positive effect on this community. Each time I drove past the sight I saw beautiful tents and a great teepee sitting on the hill! Instead you chose a blurry photo of people dancing! This report should have been in the police blotter! I would love to see you write an article in which you have interviewed local businesses on their experience of the Big Up as well as attendees and/or neighbors!

  • littlewarlikeone posted at 9:35 am on Tue, Aug 13, 2013.

    littlewarlikeone Posts: 177

    just another misappropriation of tax payer money by the most self serving over paid "police" force in the country

  • forestandtrees posted at 9:34 am on Tue, Aug 13, 2013.

    forestandtrees Posts: 32

    Lets not forget that Sheriffs Captain Dave Bartlett is a supporter of this event. Every year the event has happened arrests have been high. With a name like Levy behind it no wonder why.

  • lilbuddy posted at 7:59 am on Tue, Aug 13, 2013.

    lilbuddy Posts: 5

    What a stupid waste of taxpayer dollars, manpower, and clogging the criminal justice system with inane "crime", all while giving someone a "criminal record" for an activity that may very well become legal (marijuana) in the forseeable future. All the while, our communities have to live with break-ins to support someones crack and heroin addictions. I think our authorities have their priorities all wrong![sad]

  • Claverack Taxpayer posted at 6:43 am on Tue, Aug 13, 2013.

    Claverack Taxpayer Posts: 1

    Another excellent idea Supervisor Andrews. . . and sadly I voted for you.