Bethlehem Press

Monday, January 20, 2020

Police chief issues his Musikfest report

Tuesday, August 21, 2018 by Nate Jastrzemski njastrzemski@tnonline.com in Local News

Police Chief Mark DiLuzio has released his annual report on incidents and events which occurred at Musikfest, and things look very good from an arrest standpoint, though he said he suspects the many rainy days kept things from heating up, metaphorically, at least.

“This year, the weather refused to cooperate with us,” he said. “On the first Friday into Saturday, the Lehigh Valley area suffered heavy rain which caused some flash flooding and creeks to overflow. The Monocacy Creek was one of them. Three Musikfest platzes; Volksplatz, Familienplatz and Handwerkpltaz were flooded, with some destruction. Within a short period of time in heavy rain, the Monocacy Creek came over its borders and flooded the Johnston Park area. Other low lying areas in the city also flooded.”

An array of city workers and volunteers had those areas open again by Sunday evening.

Despite an estimated 955,000 visitors to the festival this year, police made only 20 arrests; all adults, and 10 of those were citations for public drunkenness. Half the arrests were locals and half out-of-towners.

DiLuzio said it was an outstanding year. In 2017 there were 36 arrests; in 2016 there were 16.

Other than the 20 arrests, police, firefighters and EMS responded to other incidents, ranging from lost children and adults, to parking complaints, lost and found property, minor fire calls, minor arguments, medical calls, etc. Bethlehem EMS and Fire responded to 55 emergency medical calls at Musikfest. The Bethlehem Fire Department responded to five fire related calls; two being classified as major – two downed high voltage power lines and three minor fire calls. Fire inspectors conducted daily inspections of all the Musikfest venues.

DiLuzio said each successful Musikfest is an exercise of coordination with the community, practice, and the participation of many, many agencies up to county, state, and national levels.

DiLuzio said, “On behalf of the City of Bethlehem Police Department, all the officers, 911 personnel and civilian employees, I would also like to thank the public for its cooperation during these 10 days of Musikfest. The numbers in this report are a direct result of this joint cooperation and partnership between the city, all its departments, citizens, businesses and Musikfest.

“It is a great example showing that when government, private businesses and citizens all work together on an issue, things can be accomplished with great results. Thank you Bethlehem! Thank you Musikfest! See you at Musikfest 2019!”