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Kansas State Collegian

Kansas State Collegian

The independent student news publication at Kansas State University

Kansas State Collegian

RCPD increased presence at Fake Patty’s Day

At this year’s Fake Patty’s celebration there was a noticeable change in police presence in Manhattan neighborhoods
Ben Voller
Between eighth and 12th street is a trendy spot for K-State students and others from out of town to drink and have fun. Each year hundreds of students gather to celebrate Fake Patty’s Day. (Archive photo)

Riley County Police Department increased its presence on certain streets in Manhattan, cracking down on underage drinking and unlawful assembly during Fake Patty’s Day on Saturday.

RCPD’s focus was Ratone Street, where large masses of people congregate to celebrate Fake Patty’s every year. 

Before Fake Patty’s, RCPD released a campaign via X, outlining consequences for crimes often committed on the holiday. Some explanations included the consequences of hosting minors, disorderly conduct and being a minor in possession of alcohol. 

Ashley Tokoi, RCPD public information officer, said preparing for Fake Patty’s is always a challenge. 

“Its lack of formal organization poses ongoing challenges for law enforcement,” Tokoi said in an email statement.

Tokoi said RCPD took preparation seriously this year. 

“We had over 80 RCPD officers working, including our director and assistant director, along with assistance from KSU and KHP, as well as other state agencies,” Tokoi said. “It is important to recognize the significant cost of policing this event, which has exceeded over $75,000 annually in overtime and other expenses.” 

According to the RCPD X account, “As of 10:45 a.m. law enforcement issued 20 citations centered around Fake Patty’s Day festivities: five for MIP/MIC, twelve for open container violations, and one for urinating in public. Additionally, two arrests were made for hosting-related offenses.”

“While the vast majority of attendees were law-abiding and supportive, there were unfortunately individuals who disrupted the event for others,” Tokoi said. “We are still waiting for the final tally, but the numbers are likely going to be up from last year, including arrests, citations and overall crime.”

Some students, like Cameron Hoppas, senior in chemical engineering, said she noticed the difference in police presence on Ratone Street compared to previous years.  

“We know Fake Patty’s Day is a crazy day full of drinking and large crowds, and that alone probably makes a police presence necessary,” Hoppas said. “However, the last few years it has felt like they just stood around and kept an eye on things. I felt like this year they were just trying to scare people and I think that could have limited them from being able to keep people safe. While people still went to Ratone, most students went to other areas of town to party which kept them out of trouble.”

Other students, like Cassidy Corby, junior in architecture, said there was an excess of officers but understood why their presence was needed.

“Everyone was getting upset that they were there, and that they were ticketing,” Corby said. “But the longer you think about it the more you understand they were trying to keep the crowd down and everyone safe.”

The police presence was not only felt on Ratone street, but throughout Manhattan. Students also understood it wasn’t just the police on Ratone trying to keep them safe.

“I feel like the police throughout Manhattan were also trying to protect the citizens that weren’t drinking that day by giving out DUI citations,” Corby said.

Tokoi said RCPD still wanted students to have fun on Fake Patty’s Day.

“While we appreciate the opportunity to ensure public safety during Fake Patty’s Day, our ultimate goal is to see everyone enjoy themselves safely and responsibly within the confines of the law,” Tokoi said.  

While there were no major incidents reported on Fake Patty’s, Tokoi said the day did not go perfectly for RCPD. 

“While we believe we managed the crowds in the neighborhoods somewhat better this year, we cannot categorize it as a significant success due to officer and citizen injuries directly related to the event,” Tokoi said. “Our primary goal is always safety, and falling short of that goal is something we take seriously.”

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