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Not just Franklin Park: Residents complain of loud parties featuring car-speaker wars along American Legion Highway

This past Friday and Saturday nights, Boston Police assigned extra officers to patrol the area of American Legion Highway and Walk Hill Street to break up any nascent street parties and, residents report, it worked. But no extra officers on overtime Saturday night into Sunday morning meant nobody stationed there and the result was a loud party that lasted well into the morning, residents say.

One resident said last night some of the party goers opened up their cars and competed to see who had the loudest sound systems. "It sounds like the speakers are right in your house," she said at a meeting of the Southwest Boston Civic Association.

She said she did call 911 early in the festivities - and specified the address of 650 American Legion Highway, because dispatchers seem to get frustrated when residents don't know the exact address - and that police showed up and broke up the party. But then they left and 20 minutes later the partiers were back and kept at it until 1:30 a.m. or so, she said.

"I would suggest you call your elected officials," Capt. Joseph Gillespie of Area E-18 told residents who asked what they could do, because there's only so much BPD can do with current staffing, he said.

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So how many police are on patrol out of E-5 on a weekend night shift and what are they doing that this kind of thing is not of interest to them? Is this dingbat suggesting that I ask Joe Coppinger or Michele Wu to drive down to ALH to ask these people to disperse on a Saturday night?

Seems like getting cops out of the car registration enforcement business would free up more time for stuff like dealing with public disorder, etc...

Edit- I see this guy is from E-18, not E-5.

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Voting closed 54

He's asking that people call Arroyo and demand more money for more police to patrol ALH.

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Voting closed 29

https://www.bostonglobe.com/2021/04/29/metro/with-spending-police-spotli...

"All in all, the department’s top 30 earners collected a total of $3.9 million in overtime pay for the year. The grand total for this top group: more than $9.6 million in total earnings.

They aren’t the only ones in the department taking home hefty paychecks, either. Overall, 509 Boston officers made more than $200,000 last year. By contrast, the mayor makes $199,000."

Maybe if cops spent less money on avocado toast, they could afford to do their jobs within budget.

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Voting closed 85

Maybe if every stop didn’t trigger an IA investigation or make an elected official whine about “over policing” in minority neighborhoods you’d see more quality of life enforcement in those areas.

Here’s an idea: why don’t you go and ask them nicely to turn it down.

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Voting closed 61

Cops stopped harassing citizens based on their "looks" ...

Naw. Can't do that. Just kill kill kill kill kill the messengers until people kiss the black boots and bend over for the man.

Let me guess: you think masks are oppression, vaccines are fascism, too, but harassing people who don't look like you is just aok.

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Voting closed 41

Your District Attorney, Rachel Rollin, informed the voters that she will not prosecute Disorderly Conduct and Disturbing the Peace (among 13 other offenses - source below). The purposed of an arrest or summons is to bring an offender to the Court to answer to a criminal charge. Why would the police enter these crowds and arrest or summons for these offenses when the D.A. won't prosecute? It only makes the police the punishment and that is not their role. I think the voters need to more carefully consider who the elect for public office. Elections have consequences.

I also find it interesting, after a year of marches and lawn signs against the police, that people are reflexively calling for them to address this issue. Has the community or elected officials made an attempt to de-escalate or have dialogue with this group.

It is ok to want and expect law enforcement, but law enforcement needs the support of the community. When one Boston neighborhood tried to show support for law enforcement Councilor Matt O'Malley said they "had good intentions, but they made the wrong decision". John Connolly held a similar opinion.

Hey Councilor O'Malley, do we have your approval to support law enforcement now?

https://rollins4da.com/policy/charges-to-be-declined/

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Voting closed 32

Crying racism here is a diversion from the real problem. When there is racism among police it absolutely needs to be called out. Whether the racism is practiced via institutionalized or direct racism. But there is no evidence of racism here.

But this is not one of the those situations. The noise pollution and environmental destruction affects all people, in all ranges of skin color. Given the size of Franklin Park, the many neighborhoods it is next to, that means that residents, legal, illegal, citizen, green card, are all forced to tolerate intolerable noise pollution and park destruction.

There is no wolf here. Relying upon a mantra of "kill, kill, kill, kill" is a liberal version of the same shout until all are drowned out that Trump, et al. practise.

By the way, Swirly, do you live adjacent to the noise pollution and environmental degradation? Have you consideration for the zoo animals that are frightened by the noise? The animals are there. Whether zoos are morally right or not is one question. But the reality is that zoo animals are present. Tolerating noise pollution degrades their quality of life.

Just because the technology to project sound a mile away exists does not give anyone a right to use that technology.

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Voting closed 36

are you pretending that SwirlyGrrl is not responding *directly* to crypto-fascists all throughout this post?

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The argument has always been about the color of skin. How about all colors obey the laws and stop thinking they are owded something? That might go a long way. I had nothing to do with shit 100 years ago and tried of hearing about it.

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Voting closed 5

Every stop does not trigger an IA investigation. Implying that happens is to make a false claim. In the Zoom meeting about dirtbike and noise issues in Franklin Park there were several reports where the encounters between police and people tearing up the park or throwing outragiously loud parties were resolved PEACEFULLY!

Ask them to turn the music down? Nice idea. But a person in a police uniform has the authority that a citizen does not have. So that response would be a waste if by one or two people.

Better solution is for the problem to cease being a problem. Let the party goers buy a trash dump and make all the noise they can: away from human beings and animals all of which simply try to get by each day just living.

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Voting closed 45

E-5 is almost always the first district to have its officers pulled away when it gets busy in the other districts.

It’s what we call “EDTs”, which means Emergency Deployment Teams. When one district gets bombarded with calls, or there’s a homicide or some kind of critical incident, they deploy the EDTs, sometimes citywide or sometimes from the “quietest”districts, like E-5.

So on most weekends, when EDTs get called out, which is happening much more frequently with the increase in violent crime and shootings, E-5 might be lucky to have just two or three officers handling their calls since their other units were deployed as EDTs. A very limited number of officers handling radio calls for all of West Roxbury and Roslindale.

So yeah, I agree with the captain.

- a Boston Cop

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That's interesting info, appreciate it.

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E-5 is almost always the first district to have its officers pulled away when it gets busy in the other districts.

So, in this situation the other night, wouldn't E-5 (with a nice, large, problem situation going on) be pulling officers from the districts that were quiet? How much else was really going on elsewhere that other districts couldn't help out?

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Voting closed 14

No, because as the original comment said, American Legion falls on E-18 and B-3, not E-5.

Also, did you miss the part where two different cops said that the amount of gunfire calls, especially in the weekends, is skyrocketing?

- a Boston Cop

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Voting closed 19

No, as you can see by the nesting, I was replying to a comment (from anon/A Boston Cop) that said E-5. So, don't blame me if you wrote the wrong thing.
-
The captain made a nonspecific comment about staffing. You and other commentator made a general comment about gunfire incidents rising. Nobody said anything about what activity was actually happening that night anywhere that would explain pulling officers or not sending officers.

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But it's alway them and you know it

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If 2-3 serious shooting calls are going other parts of the city needs coverage (which is usually every weekend)

Edit: never mind didn’t see the response

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Here are some gems from The Globe regarding the community meeting the other night.

Councilor Julia Mejia
“We’re having a conversation about people who are not here.”

It's terribly unfortunate the ones breaking the law weren't able to make the call Julia.

Michelle Wu
"must be very intentional here about not perpetuating the overpolicing of Black and brown youth, so we can find solutions that engage young people, protect pedestrian safety, and keep our parks and open spaces welcoming for all.”

Overpolicing isnt a thing Michelle, it's policing and enforcing the law.

Nothing will be done, because no one has the backbone to do anything.

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Who knew that "anon" was a code word for "arrogant know-nothing racist"?

Guess what anon: OVERPOLICING IS AN ACTUAL FUCKING THING!

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Swirly, I live in the area affected. I listened to the discussion. In this instance you are incorrect.

I don't disagree that overpolicing is real. In this situation one of the problems is that there supposedly are not enough police.

At the meeting there were various perspectives. I agree that the folks who are making the gross noise, disturbing the natural wildlife as well as the animals at the zoo and harming the physical environment of Franklin Park do not have a right to defend themselves. Doing harm is not defensible.

They have every right to state what they want. But they have an obligation to part of the solution to the problem that they area causing.

So please step back from your ad hominem attack. Your arguments are often good. But in this case your argument is just wrong.

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Also the people even considering if we need to somehow accommodate people who want to drive loudass motorbikes around neighborhoods can GTFO, although it would be hilarious if the city build a bridge to Long Island which only could carry dirtbikes so they could all roar around out there.

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Voting closed 29

as it was directed entirely at something the poster actually said, that "overpolicing isn't a thing". How do you direct an ad hominem at an anon, anyway?

I suppose you could say that she was inferring the character of the person from the argument, but that's not an ad hominem. An hominem isn't when you say "this person is saying stupid things, and therefore must be stupid". It's when you say "this person is stupid, so what they're saying must be stupid."

To say "overpolicing isn't a thing", especially in the context of Michelle Wu's reasonable caution about its use, and who it's used against, is a denial that racism, and especially racist behavior by police, exists, and thus is racist. Swirly was right to call it out.

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Voting closed 15

An hominem isn't when you say "this person is saying stupid things, and therefore must be stupid". It's when you say "this person is stupid, so what they're saying must be stupid."

it’s amazing that people still don’t understand this

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Voting closed 9

Cranking up the over policing mantra is like the boy crying wolf. Use the phrase often enough and it becomes hollow and meaningless.

Where noise from boom boom cars, speakers appropriate to concert venues and dirt bikes in Franklin Park, etc. is concerned skin color is not the issue.

There is no evidence that it is. There is no evidence at play of racism. Crying racism where it does not exist dilutes and defeats the work of calling out racism where it does exist.

The reality is that these situations are under policed. Talk to the people who are woken by the noise; talk to the children who are scared; talk to the animals whose lives are disrupted by the noise. Look at the damage done to Franklin Park.

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But in this case pedantry avoids the real problem.

The problems are noise pollution and environmental destruction.

Focus on the harm being done. Pedantry diverts from the real issues of noise pollution and environmental destruction.

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you are, for some reason, focused on SwirlyGrrl’s supposed pedantry, and not the word salad they were responding to. why is that?

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Tied down your animals

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I've woken at two or three in the morning and heard the noise coming from Franklin Park. I've seen pictures of some the cars with what looks like 30 or 40 speakers (they actually look pretty cool).
1. All the clubs are closed. I definitely don't think people should be blasting music at all hours of the night, but where are people supposed to party and have fun? Can the city set up a couple of designated areas so folks have a place blow off some steam and unwind?

2. We don't need police to tell people to go home or to break up a party. This is why we need to build community. If you know me and you know my daughter and we can't sleep, you might listen when I ask you to chill with the music, or at least you'd be more likely.

3. Take money from the police budget and fund an outside space where people can party, put a curfew on it, and also use money to pay community liaisons (not affiliated with the police) who can build relationships with folks and break up parties if need be (among other things).

People have a right to party and to sleep, we can make it all work.

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Voting closed 27

These turds were having these kind of insanely loud parties when clubs were open. You can’t blame everything on covid. Some people are just assholes. They know their music is loud and disturbing people. It’s very obvious. They just don’t care.

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Voting closed 110

1. All the clubs are closed. I definitely don't think people should be blasting music at all hours of the night, but where are people supposed to party and have fun? Can the city set up a couple of designated areas so folks have a place blow off some steam and unwind?

Or we could like have bars stay open until 4am like other modern cities.

Having a space for parties would never happen. This would require some permit of sorts to be filed. No one will do this when they can hang a stereo speaker out their window and party in their own backyard. Why give the city $$ when you can do it yourself. And then it becomes a battle of 'my property i want to do what I want'.

Which is the next thing.. why does this keep happening. People today are self serving and don't give a rats ass about anyone else. (see Anti Vaxxers, Anti Maskers, Kim Kardashian as examples). So parties will happen and will annoy others because people simple do not care about others.

Community people might be a way, but you're talking about 'forming relationships'.. remember these people throwing these repetitive parties are not mom and dad with kids who care about noise levels. Its some moron who doesn't. They could give two shits about a community liaison says to them.

I only speak from experience. I live in a neighborhood where the minute it is warm out, the parties start. Every weekend, Friday & Saturday someone within earshot is having a party.

I live in a neighborhood that has alot of shift and blue collar workers. Many of which work at night or very early in the morning. You'd think these people would speak up about them, but they don't. (For many its a cultural thing). You'd think people would have consideration for their fellow worker who's nearby. NOPE. Some of the noise from these parties vibrates my windows, so I cannot imagine what it is like being next door.

What to do? I'm not sure. Police enforcement I guess, but even that doesn't work. I can't tell you how many times its been 2am, I've called local PD to shut down a party. They arrive, 10 minutes later the music is back up to the same level. Wash, rinse, repeat. All the police can do is tell'em to shut it down. Nothing saying they won't do it again.

I think fines might be better. The only way people listen is when you hit them in the wallet. Finger wagging never works.

PS - Over the years I've learned to tune them out. I've also learned its cultural. My Costa Rican neighbor says "Oh Latinos.. any reason to have a party is a good one. Sun comes up, lets have a party. Moon comes out, lets have a party". So its a given.

My issue isn't the level, its the music itself. Some of this latin hip hop makes me wanna strangle myself. My immediate neighbors know this (and warn us before a party), and tends to play spanish rock.. which is really nice IMHO.

The consolation prize here is that by the end of the summer I know what all the popular Latin Songs are of the year. I may not know artist or song name, but I know it by hearing it.

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Voting closed 32

Really - they stop it, the police leave and wash and repeat? Lock them up, take their cards and equipment away and start cracking some heads. These thugs can't take over the whole city. Total BS

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Voting closed 4

1. The noise issue preceded Covid. There is no cause and effect.

2. Many of the people blasting the city do not live in Boston. They are in effect leaving their neighborhood and visiting their abuses on other neighborhoods. Perhaps they think that no one is bothered since they are more or less in the middle of Boston's largest park. They are wrong.

3. The people who buy the massive speakers can also put the money toward buying their own place - in a physical place where they are not harming other human beings, wildlife living in the area or other innocents.

These folks are polluting the environment with noise. They are causing direct harm.

No one has a right "to party." The right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness has ABSOLUTELY no entitlement to activities that harm others. The folks want to throw parties? Go ahead. But do not harm others.

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Voting closed 64

Pure and simple

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"Our current criminal-justice system is rooted in the assumption that millions of people require policing, surveillance, containment, prison. It is a dark view of humanity." - Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor.

Ya'll just have a dark view of humanity.

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Voting closed 7

These people aren't from the neighborhood. They drive in from other areas and fuck around all night. This is why telling them to go home won't work anyway - they got all dressed up and drove all the way into Boston.

The cops aren't going to start arresting people because there's hundreds there and it would cause a riot. They need to hit them when they're separated - Send a couple undercovers to start collecting license plates. Go after them, tow and impound the cars during the week. Charge them thousands to get the cars back and remove the speakers before they do. That's the only thing that'll work.

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Voting closed 6

Good corporate citizens as well as direct governmental (e.g., BWSC) pay the police detail pay for make work, unnecessary presence. The police obviously will fight tooth and nail to keep detail money flowing to them.

So what if the detail money paid to police is shifted to paying the same police for being present to situations where they presence makes a real difference.

Most details are useless wastes of money. Since the money flow will not stop at least the work performed in exchange for being paid detail money could be work that provides real, true and actual benefit to the community.

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Voting closed 32

I agree. But cops will fight this because they would rather get paid to nap or play on their phone at a construction site than actually make the city a better place by breaking up obscenely loud parties.

Do these cops ever get embarrassed when they see construction workers actually working hard while the cop makes twice as much for looking at their phone?

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Voting closed 41

The legitimization of details, and the tacit acceptance by the majority of the public, provides rationalization of behavior that is legalized graft. Details are grafted onto projects as a way to put more money into the pockets of police officers. Most details provide no real service. Each time that money is accepted the person paid is accepting money that while not dirty, is not clean.

Graft of this kind is normally criminal. We consider graft to immoral. Using intimidation to force graft is criminal and immoral. The police can hold up building permits if details are not included in a project. This is intimidation.

It is immoral because it done with full awareness that these are graft. It is unethical because it is police behaving in ways that otherwise would be the very people they are charged to stop.

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Voting closed 34

I used to manage a bar in harvard square. We and a couple of nearby bars paid a pretty penny for a detail every Friday and Saturday night, 10pm-2am. The vast majority of nights, the cop did nothing but stand around. But a cop just standing around really does discourage the chowderheads. And on the rare occasions when some random drunk burst into the ladies room with his dick out, or called his waitress a not very nice word, or got heated because we wouldn’t accept his Czechoslovakian ID, or just refused to leave the bar half an hour after we closed because he paid for his goddamn drink and he’s gonna finish it, it was real nice to have a cop standing outside to help, rather than me and the busboys. Also the Cambridge License Commission could be real pricks if there was an “incident” at your bar and gave far greater weight to a cop’s testimony than the bar owners. With the cost of a Cambridge liquor license back then, not to mention the safety of your staff, the few hundred bucks you spent on a detail was well worth it.

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Voting closed 25

Big difference between at detail at a bar and at a construction site.

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Voting closed 13

I must point out this is the unintended consequence of strong public unions.

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Voting closed 12

The State legislature maintains the silly status quo with traffic details. Policing the park would require someone to pay for the detail (who)?, or else OT. And you know how OT is going these days.

. So what if the detail money paid to police is shifted to paying the same police for being present to situations where they presence makes a real difference.

Most details are useless wastes of money. Since the money flow will not stop at least the work performed in exchange for being paid detail money could be work that provides real, true and actual benefit to the community.

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Voting closed 9

Police (and firefighter) details are enmeshed with city issued permits. No detail, no permit. This part of the union contracts with police and firefighters.

So, the issue is local, not state level. The issue is unions abusing priviledge to the level of selfishness and even avarice.

But if police choose to refuse to live up to their oaths unless they are paid, then shift the money around. The private and public entities can offer to pay the money they otherwise have to pay for the permits (the graft) to police who are actually doing police work.

Sitting in a personal car, while wearing a uniform, while construction workers do real work, is not police work.

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Voting closed 15

But in contract negotiations the City will offer raises in detail rates in exchange for lower general raises or more Union payments towards health insurance, and more often than not the union will take it (if bargained correctly)

The city gets their 10% cut, and the City also saves tens of millions of dollars over the years in wages and Health benefits.

It may be a racket, but it goes around and around. It isn’t just the cops getting their share.

You have obviously lost money in this Daan. How much?

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Voting closed 18

Pete, if you have not done detail work in 10 years then I would think you have no dog in this fight. Your question about lost money is a diversion and irrelevant.

If dollar amounts need to specified then the correct question is how much money has been paid to police for detail work? Especially detail work where there is no work done. Detail work where there is no bona fide benefit is immoral and for unethical. It is a legal form of criminal behavior. We can not expect good policing from people who willing engage in conduct where they receive money for doing nothing (well, except for the indirect intimidation of withheld permits).

I am glad that you admit that details may be a racket. That is step. Awareness of diseased behavior is the first step to curing the disease. In this case the disease is the lust of greed.

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Voting closed 11

In all honesty, whenever I had done a detail, they were actual locations that you had to (or should have been) looking out for the safety of pedestrians or assisted in the flow of traffic. I found them boring and not worth the time or money.

If I the details that I were offered were all like the ones you seem to be obsessed with maybe I’d know what you were talking about? I mean in all seriousness, at least 90% of them actually need a human being to direct traffic around them?

Again, I’ve probably lost more money because of the details than made so wtf to I know?

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Voting closed 14

I think the issue isn't usually whether the detail is needed, but whether it needs to be a police officer doing it. Most places use civilian flaggers to direct traffic around construction.

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So that’s why it kind of is a problem.

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Civilian flaggers instead of BPD means more employment for Boston residents who then spend that money locally. It's a great starter opportunity for minority/ women/ veteran-owned businesses.

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Voting closed 8

Not good when you have to work in the morning. Not good when you have to go school , either.

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Voting closed 16

maybe babies so they get more welfare.

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Voting closed 2

"One resident said last night some of the party goers opened up their cars and competed to see who had the loudest sound systems. "It sounds like the speakers are right in your house," she said at a meeting of the Southwest Boston Civic Association".

Next time Karen should call a social worker.

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Voting closed 9

stop having babies and get a job so Karen can go to work and pay our taxes

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Voting closed 5