Handicapping Your St.Patrick’s Day Arrest Bets

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How many arrests do you think there will be for open containers, underage drinking and public urination?

Parade day is almost here and while everyone’s been talking about the drinking and partying, one of the biggest forms of entertainment for Newporters of all ages is to see the police report of the number of arrests made the day of the St. Patrick’s Day Parade…and while we’ve never bet on it ourselves, people always joke about putting money on it.

[If you are putting money down, we’d just like to say that we don’t condone illegal gambling and bear no responsibility for any losses you may incur. However, we do demand a 20% cut of any winnings.]

This could be a record-breaking year.

There is a very good chance that the numbers for this year are going to be among the highest we’ve seen in a while, if ever.

If you look back over the years, there are typically 75-100 arrests each Parade Day. Typically, 2/3 of those are open container violations, while the last third is split between underage drinking and public urination.

St Patrick's Day arrestedThe biggest determination of the total number of arrests is, unsurprisingly, the weather. If it’s a beautiful day, more people are out longer and getting themselves in a little more trouble. The weather Saturday is supposed to be beautiful and sunny, if, at around 50ºF, not unseasonably warm. That sunniness means that people won’t be afraid to venture outside, which is where they suddenly find themselves simultaneously thirsty and needing desperately to pee, all within clear view of an undercover police officer or three.

So we’re guessing just on weather alone, we’d expect 90-100 arrests.

The Black Swan

The big question is something we can’t remember if we’ve ever seen before. That is, unlike every other parade we can remember, Salve Regina University is in session. Typically, spring break is either starting or finishing the week of the parade, meaning that most of the 2,100 undergrads are out of town for all the action. Yes, there were a few who’d delay their departure or head back early to be Irish for a day, but, in theory, the critical mass was away.

Not this year. Now we’ve got the whole student body, most of whom are underage, about to be dropped into the mix like gasoline onto a grease fire. We’re guessing this is going to skew things a bit.

Rather than the typical 1:1 ratio between underage drinking and public urination, we’re thinking that it might shift to 2:1 or even 3:1. That might be enough to kick the total number up to as high at 125-130.


At this point, we’d like to point out that the fines for all these crimes have increased rather significantly in recent years, so instead of maybe $300, after 2013 they jumped to $6-700, which is pretty steep for drinking a beer on the street.

Don’t say you weren’t warned.

-Tristan Pinnock, Blast Gambling Correspondent

Tristan's just this guy, ya know?