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Cops: No major incidents on 4th

With the beautiful weather and long weekend helping to make the Fourth of July in Detroit Lakes a busy one, law enforcement say it was pretty low key and there were no major incidents.

Alcohol was a factor in many of the incidents and arrests both within the city limits and outside, but supervision of the Ottertail River area went much better than years past.

“The river, I think went relatively well,” Becker County Sheriff Kelly Shannon said Friday. “We had a lot of extra law enforcement and extra presence out there and that definitely helped.

“We still had a few incidents; we still have a few things we need to work on, but overall it made quite a difference, a very positive difference. That was encouraging.”

Though the river brought the younger crowd, the beach was filled more with families.

“Wednesday night was pretty quiet. During the (Fourth of July) day, a lot of families on the beach,” Detroit Lakes Police Chief Tim Eggebraaten said. “It was a busy beach time, not real busy for us during the day. Up until the fireworks it was busy but nothing crazy, and then once the fireworks got done, it got real busy for our guys.”

He said Friday that none of the police officers got hurt Thursday, but he was still sifting through the incident reports from the previous night.

“It was quite busy.”

One more serious incident happened Thursday morning at 8, when a vehicle struck a pedestrian.

A 42-year-old woman was struck on West Lake Drive near Golfview Road — near the Chesterfield addition — and injured her arm and leg. She was taken to Essentia Health-St. Mary’s Hospital and treated for non-life threatening injuries.

The man driving the vehicle was arrested for DWI but hadn’t been charged as of Friday morning.

“Last night (Thursday) was mainly fights and disorderly type things,” Eggebraaten said.

“We had 15 lock-ups overnight and most of those were alcohol related,” Shannon said. “A couple boating while intoxicated. We had two of those on Big Detroit Lake.”

As usual, the Detroit Lakes area was flooded with out-of-towners coming to enjoy the lakes.

“There were a lot of Canadians,” Eggebraaten said. “Just going through the parking lots and looking at license plates, (there were) a lot of North Dakota and Nebraska. There were a lot of out-of-staters.

“It seemed pretty typical of the Fourth of Julys we’ve been seeing lately. It’s a lot of families during the day and for the fireworks and then the families try to get out of there and get home and that’s usually when the non-family people start getting crazy,” he said.

“The bar crowd seemed very busy last night.”

The DLPD continued extra patrols on Friday, and then returned to the standard staffing level by Saturday, Eggebraaten said. After the Fourth, they sit down as a staff, he added, and go over what worked and what didn’t to improve on next year’s Fourth.

Shannon said the BCSO would have extra deputies on patrol throughout the weekend.

Overall, it was a good holiday for law enforcement.

“We couldn’t have asked for better weather, Fourth of July wise,” Eggebraaten said.

“I think it was pretty comparable (to years past),” Shannon said. “The Fourth is always so busy here so it’s kind of hard to tell if it’s an increase or not because it’s solid people every year.”

Follow Pippi Mayfield on Twitter at @PippiMayfield.