Madison Police Dept. warn of tailgating and Halloween crackdown

Published: Oct. 12, 2020 at 2:55 PM CDT
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - The Madison Police Dept. wants campus-area bars and people planning house parties to know neither Halloween nor the start of Badger football counts as a good reason to violate the city’s order capping how many people are allowed at public gatherings.

On Monday, the department released a letter that it plans to send to campus-area bars, reminding them of the rules regarding Public Health Madison and Dane County’s emergency order. PHMDC’s emergency order caps indoor gatherings at 10 people – not including employees – and requires social distancing and masks. Outdoor gatherings can have 25 people or less, with similar restrictions.

Previously, health officials noted that its emergency restrictions supersede the state’s recent order because the local one is more restrictive.

In addition to warnings for bars, police want people planning their own celebrations to know house parties and other gatherings are verboten too. MPD points out violators risk being cited for creating or permitting a health nuisance, which would carry a fine of $376, at least, among other potential counts.

For those who attend the University of Wisconsin-Madison, the police department states the university’s Dean of Students will be working with officers to make sure any offending students would be held accountable for their actions.

The letter notes that, not only is Freakfest canceled, there are now city-sanctioned Halloween-themed events set for that weekend.

The department also included a list of alcohol-based violations and potential fines:

  • Underage drinking – If you look under 21 and possess alcohol, you will be asked to provide proof of age. (Mandatory Court and maximum fine of $187 for first offense)
  • Procuring Alcohol – If you provide alcohol to someone who is not yet 21, you will be cited. This includes the underage people who walk into your open home and help themselves to alcohol. You are responsible for controlling who comes into your home and any alcohol you have in your residence. ($376 per violation per roommate)
  • Dispensing Alcohol – You and your friends who are 21 or older can buy alcohol together and drink alcohol together, but you cannot resemble a bar. Any exchange of money for alcohol constitutes dispensing alcohol. ($681 per roommate)
  • Open Intoxicants on Public Street – The ‘Public Street’ extends from the sidewalk across the street to the opposite sidewalk. No open alcohol is allowed in this area. ($313)
  • Unreasonable Noise – Unreasonable noise can include anything from a loud individual person to loud music coming from speakers or other devices. ($187 per roommate)

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