The once overcrowded, highly patrolled streets of Isla Vista for Halloween weekend do not look to be shaping up , and it’s been part of a downward trend in recent years.
The strict rules and tight security have taken the wildest parties down and out of towners do not appear to be attracted to the area.
Most of the arrests over the last 20 years during the Halloween weekend have been people who come into the area to celebrate and end up in jail with alcohol related violations. Most of the offenses have been misdemeanors, but felony behavior has occurred and serious injuries have been reported.
Tonight, tomorrow and Halloween night next week, there will still be a solid presence by the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s department, the California Highway Patrol, regional police agencies, probation officers, and UC Police. AMR medical teams will be ramping up as well.
The Isla Vista Foot Patrol office will be a command post to process those arrested and rotate assigned deputies to specific areas.
Barricades are up on certain streets for crowd control. Surveillance cameras and bright spotlights will also be used.
Two first year students said so far the Halloween scene was “lame” if you were looking for parties, but both had other plans that put smiles on their faces.
Sophia Lewis was going to a showing of the classic film “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” in its 40th year. Saoirse Anggreni was going to the UC Recreation center for roller skating in costumes.
The young female college students also said their dorms had tight rules and they did not expect unwanted guests or excessive noise.
“I feel safe here especially because they crack down on Halloween weekend and make sure nothing happens. There’s huge police presence and mandatory meetings.” said Sophia Lewis.
The county as a ban on live bands and loud amplified music after 6 p.m. on special event weekends like this.
UC Santa Barbara is planning a special concert in the Thunderdome Saturday night with recording artist and Atlanta rapper Young Thug.
Parking restrictions are in place on Trigo Road and several other streets. That allows law enforcement more room for their vehicles, surveillance cameras and special staging areas.
Some car owners have been told they can leave their cars but if they take them out of the area, they can not come in until Sunday. Aaron Raimi said at his apartment complex he paid for a special pass. “Personally when I have been out I have seen kids punch cars, the side view mirrors and it’s because they are young and stupid and inebriated.” He said the parking pass was a good idea. “So I guess it is worth the cost you know.”
Saturday night there will also be a soccer match going on nearby at Harder Stadium and thousands of fans are expected to be in attendance about 5 p.m. Many will be in costumes. After the match, those in cars who are trying to get back to Highway 101 or Goleta are expected to be directed away from Isla Vista streets.
For more information about Isla Vista Halloween go to : https://halloween.as.ucsb.edu/