Police aim to tame Lahaina Halloween
Youth curfews and bans on liquor and offensive costumes will be enforced
LAHAINA, Hawaii » Police plan to keep a lid on Maui's Halloween party this year with strict curfews, enforcement of underage-drinking laws and bans on inappropriate costumes.
The hard-line stance on the party comes after the Maui County Cultural Resources Commission reviewed complaints that the celebration had gotten out of hand and disrespects cultural sites.
The festivities, which usually draw crowds of 30,000 people, were allowed to go on this year but will be reviewed in December.
"Certain behaviors that were tolerated in the past will not be tolerated this year," said Capt. Charles Hirata, commander of the Lahaina Patrol District. "We are increasing capacity to handle more arrests."
That means there will be no alcohol consumption on the street allowed in the historic district. Underage drinkers will be targeted. Parades will be shorter.
A long list of costume accessories also are banned: swords, knives, replica firearms, martial arts nunchakus, throwing stars, baseball bats, laser pointers, torches, water guns.
Between 80 and 90 police officers are expected to be on duty in Lahaina town for Halloween. Last year, police reported arresting 20 people, with alcohol playing a part in most of the arrests.
Police will set up roadblocks for drivers entering and leaving Lahaina to check for people driving under the influence, said Lt. Bobby Hill, commander of the police traffic section.
"We will be in the mix of traffic," Hill said. "Drivers should take their time and watch out for pedestrians, be more aware."
People could be kept out of bars if they refuse to remove masks or are wearing heavy face paint that makes it difficult to match them with their photo identification, said Lt. Arthur "Reuben" Dadez.
Those who violate curfews could be arrested. Youths under age 13 must be off the streets by 8 p.m., those between ages 13 and 15 by 10 p.m. and those ages 16 and 17 by midnight.
Skimpy and offensive costumes will not be allowed, said officer Lawrence Kauhaahaa, of the police Lahaina Specialized Unit.
"If people are wearing something that's offensive to somebody else, they could be arrested," he said.
The police presence might keep inappropriately costumed adults out of the children's parade, which was started 28 years ago to provide a safe place for children to go on Halloween, said Ruth McKay, a director of West Maui Soroptomists.
"We have had a couple of adults crash the parade," she said, including a 6-foot-tall man wearing a diaper. "You can't get them out. This year, police say they will."