Pullman PD received 127 calls during Halloween, five related to suicide

Several calls were noise complaints; suspicious man at Greek Row identified



Pullman police officers arrest an individual near the intersection of NE California Street and NE A Street on Saturday. Officers arrested the individual for being a minor in possession of alcohol after displaying poor behavior.

LOREN NEGRON, Evergreen editor-in-chief

The Pullman Police Department received 127 calls during Halloween weekend, a slight increase from last year’s 109 calls.

“Last year was so different because we just didn’t have the numbers of people in town,” Pullman Police Cmdr. Jake Opgenorth said. “And so, right off the bat, we didn’t have the activity level of a normal Halloween weekend.”

Opgenorth said the department typically doubles the number of staff and stresses high visibility patrols during busy weekends like Halloween. Officers focus on making positive community contacts, as well as education, prevention and enforcement.

“We want to be seen,” he said. “We want the community to know that we’re out there and hopefully we can provide a sense or feeling of safety by being visible.”

Many of the calls this weekend were noise complaints, Opgenorth said. There were a few alcohol offense-related incidents and minor assaults. 

Of the 127 calls this weekend, five were suicide-related, according to Pullman PD’s police log. 

On Saturday, there was a report of a rape on NE Linden Street. An individual overdosed on NE Myrtle Street and was transported to Pullman Regional Hospital. Law enforcement and paramedics also responded to a report of an unconscious person on NE Campus Street, according to the police log.

An individual was arrested Saturday for driving under the influence at the intersection of NE California and NE A streets, according to the police log.

On the same day, Pullman PD finally identified the individual who was reported multiple times for suspiciously walking around Greek Row.

College Hill Officer Garrett Willis said the individual is exercising his freedom of movement in a public space, so there is not much Pullman PD can do.

“He simply stood in a public place and stared and made people feel uncomfortable,” Opgenorth said. “He understands it, but he doesn’t seem to care.”

At around 10 p.m. Saturday, an individual wearing a Batman costume was arrested at the intersection of NE California and NE A streets. Batman was with a group of people when he threw a Busch Light can on the street upon seeing Willis and Pullman Police Officer Joseph Geil.

Batman’s friends left the scene. Willis told Batman to “make better choices” and asked him for his ID. Batman asked Willis for his badge number.

Batman started acting aggressively and made many remarks toward Willis.

“I look older than you,” Batman said to Willis.

“I don’t like your attitude,” Willis later responded to Batman.

Batman was arrested for being a minor in possession of alcohol.

Willis and other officers give a lot of warnings during patrol, and people are usually apologetic. The key is to be courteous, respectful and polite to officers, he said.

“Attitude goes a long way,” he said.

Batman was not courteous, respectful and polite. Willis said Batman talked himself into getting arrested.

“Someone with that attitude is going to have more issues later tonight,” Willis said. 

Geil said officers pay attention to hand movements when patrolling Greek Row. When people have alcohol with them, they usually try to hide or discard it.

Officers also look if people are sick or trying to start a fight, he said.

Opgenorth said Pullman PD encourages those who are hosting parties to contact the department as soon as possible when issues arise. Officers can provide assistance and help keep everything under control so problems don’t escalate.

“We know the parties are going to happen, and that’s totally fine,” he said. “As long as they’re done, hopefully, respectfully and safely and everybody has a good time — that’s our goal.”