CENTRAL COAST, CALIF. - The Santa Cruz Police Department said Tuesdays Fourth of July brought slightly smaller crowds to the Main Beach and the City of Santa Cruz but hundreds of calls were still flooding the emergency lines.
SCPD responded to 467 calls for service on July 4th. Of those calls, 288 took place between the hours of 4:00 p.m. and 12:45 a.m. Police said 104 calls for service were firework related.
Also on Independence Day, a hit and run accident took place on Seabright Avenue and Windsor Street in Santa Cruz. The driver of a Toyota sedan crashed into a parked van. Santa Cruz police said the driver crashed and fled the scene on foot. Officers located 18-year-old, Jack Waldman on Frederick Street. Waldman was arrested for DUI and hit and run charges.
Santa Cruz PD 4th of July Stats:
1 Felony Arrest-An intoxicated subject with a metal baton, causing a disturbance at the motel.
7 Fireworks Arrests- Fireworks possession and discharging fireworks.
5 Misdemeanor Arrests- Most misdemeanor arrests were for being drunk in public.
58 Infractions Citations Issued- Majority of the citations were for open container.
41 Triple Fine Citations- Citations were mostly alcohol and fireworks related.
15 Traffic Citations
Santa Cruz County Sheriff's Office said they encountered less issues this 4th of July compared to other years yet they still confiscated some big fireworks.
Deputies responded to 160 calls for service, from 12:00 p.m. on July 4th and 6:00 a.m. on July 5th.
Deputies made 5 arrests involving alcohol, warrants and simple assault charges. The Sheriff's Office wrote 50 citations, 28 of which were for firework violations.
19 people were booked into the Santa Cruz County Jail and an additional 8 diversions to the Janus Sobering Center. Hundreds of illegal fireworks were confiscated.
Hollister Police and Fire also had their share of a busy 4th of July. 28 citations were written for various illegal fireworks.
This year Hollister Police used an app called, “FOREalert.” The app was orginally designed for rapid responses to active shooting situations; However Hollister's Police Chief David Westrick wanted to make it for reporting fireworks. 613 people reported firework activity through the app.
Overall, there were less calls for dispatch with 48 this year compared to 63 in 2016.
Chief Westrick said “because we had a solid plan, a great team and valuable/useable technology to assist us, everything worked well. The only issue we had was we did not have enough officers in this operation to take care of the incoming app messages. I did not anticipate that many people would download the app and then use it.” He went on to say “In talking with the FOREalert developers they felt 10-15 messages/reports for the night would be a successful rollout because we are the first police department in the nation to do something like this. I guess they got the bonus plan, because we received over 600. We will analyze the data for frequency of offenses/reports for a geographic location for next year’s operation.”