Trick or Treat. Please Don't Arrest Me

Even the best costume won't protect you from stepped-up law enforcement at campuses nationwide this Halloween weekend.

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At the University of Wisconsin's Freakfest, an organized event that features live DJs and bands, 300 law enforcement officials will flood the streets of Madison to try to control the estimated 50,000 homecoming revelers, according to the Badger Herald. With memories still fresh from 2002's riots, which left State Street stores looted, burned, and vandalized, police hope the recent years of costumed peace will continue, the Daily Cardinal writes.

The city of Athens—home of Ohio University—has put its own method to the madness, with concerts plus a massive costume contest, according to the Post. The raucous party is a huge draw for non-OU students all over Ohio. Less than half of the revelers arrested last year were even college students, and not all of those students were from OU. The voices of reason have offered the Post's readers some easier-said-than-done advice to stay out of trouble: "Use common sense with drinking, and know your limits."

Down south, the Reveille reports that Louisiana State University is bracing for "its own little parade of freak shows" at its annual State Street block party, and on the West Coast, UC-Santa Barbara police officers are cracking down on every law imaginable: "We have a zero-tolerance enforcement posture for all crimes alcohol-related, party-related—anything that you can think of," a sheriff's department sergeant told the Bruin. "Drunk in public, open containers, minors in possession of alcohol, indecent exposure, and loud music ordinances [are] all zero tolerance." Isla Vista residents must also obtain Halloween parking permits to park their cars near campus, and perhaps most drastically, police have asked UCSB students to not invite their outsider friends. The nearby wildfires have already strained the resources of Santa Barbara, and the arms of the campus have become metaphorically more closed. A letter from UCSB's chancellor to neighboring schools' newspapers reads, "We hope that your students will consider the risks and possible penalties of coming to Isla Vista this year and decide to stay away for their own safety and protection." It's all fun and games until those handcuffs chafe against that bright-blue Superman spandex.