After a suspect was caught on camera pouring maple syrup all over police cruisers in Rindge, New Hampshire, Police Chief Dan Anair is calling for the end of a longstanding Halloween tradition in town.
On Tuesday, NBC10 Boston spoke with residents in Rindge who described mayhem around Midnight on Saturday.
“A lot of screaming, lots of obscenities, a lot of cars screeching up and down the streets,” said David Jadlocki.
The tradition has gone on for more than 18 years. Right before Halloween, some teenagers in town toilet paper the common. But this year, police say about 30 teenagers were wreaking havoc Saturday night - toilet papering the town, lighting couches on fire in the middle of the streets, dumping trash, throwing bottles and cans at cars, and pouring maple syrup on police cruisers.
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“I was told, ‘boy, you have yourself quite the sticky situation,’” chuckled Chief Anair.
He says he’s only laughing because no one got hurt. Anair says the tradition has gone too far.
“It’s the level of disrespect,” he said. “I am at the point where this is no longer acceptable.”
It seems neighbors agree with the Chief.
“Kids need to learn to take pride in their town,” said Lorraine Stenerson.
“Let’s build our community rather than tearing it apart,” Jadlocki added.
When NBC10 Boston asked 4-year-old Vanessa Cloutier if she liked the toilet paper, she said, “No…because the naughty kids did all of this.”
And the chief says it’s time those “naughty kids” are held accountable.
He is asking the public to help identify the teen in the video, encouraging others involved to come forward, and calling for an end to the decades-old toilet papering tradition.
“Let’s quit while we are ahead because someone is going to end up getting hurt,” Chief Anair said.
Legally, the kids could face vandalism charges, but the chief says this year, they will just be referred to a juvenile diversion program.
Next time, he says he won’t be so lenient.
Anyone with information is asked to contact the Rindge Police Department.