Over $19,000 in AMP fines laid over St. Patrick’s Day weekend

Green smoke plumes fill the air during St. Patrick’s Day gatherings on Saturday, Mar. 18, 2023. Image via Kingston Police St. Patrick’s Day 2023 report.

As has been the case for a number of years now, Kingston Police and City of Kingston Bylaw Enforcement worked alongside community partners to address large gatherings in the University District.

According to a release from Kingston Police, most individuals took part in respectful and lawful celebrations, however, a large crowd gathered on Aberdeen Street on Saturday, Mar. 18, posing an immediate threat to safety in the area.

A nuisance party was declared just before 3 p.m., and the large gathering was successfully cleared by police and bylaw enforcement to keep roads open for motorists and emergency services. According to the release, the nuisance party declaration was lifted at 4 p.m.

“Kingston Police spent a number of weeks leading up to St. Patrick’s Day providing proactive messaging to the community in and around the University District, local area high schools, and other post-secondary campuses,” said Acting Kingston Police Chief Scott Fraser. “This messaging played a vital role in ensuring that all attendees were aware of expectations in advance of the event. Kingston Police then followed up this messaging with enforcement during the event where required. This model is something that we will continue to use and build upon in the future. We are happy to report that, despite thousands of students pouring onto the streets, we were able to keep our staff and community safe. I would like to personally thank all of our staff and partners who stepped up to assist us during the event.”

Kingston Police provided the following statistics from the weekend:

Friday, March 17

Liquor Licencing Act Charges:

  • 120 open liquor charges, resulting in a court summons
  • 3 public intoxication charges, resulting in an arrest
  • 13 underage drinking charges, resulting in a court summons

Saturday, March 18

Liquor Licencing Act Charges:

  • 210 open liquor charges, resulting in a court summons
  • 5 public intoxication charges, resulting in an arrest
  • 17 underage drinking charges, resulting in a court summons

Administrative Monetary Penalties:

  • 4 for Obstructing an Officer
  • 1 for make/cause/permit noise by yelling, shouting, hooting, or hollering

Bylaw Enforcement statistics – March 17 & 18

Administrative Monetary Penalties:

  • 12 for amplification of sound, resulting in a $200 fine 
  • 33 for failure to leave premises, resulting in a $500 fine
  • 2 for yelling and shouting at a prohibited time, resulting in a $100 fine

Police said that partnerships are key to successful operations, such as that which occurred over the weekend. Kingston Police and the City of Kingston’s Bylaw enforcement team worked together closely with other community partners, as well as Queen’s University, to inform and educate the community about important enforcement information, including that the University District Safety Initiative was in effect from March 9 to March 19.

The unsanctioned street parties this past weekend followed an extensive door-to-door education and awareness campaign, when representatives from the Police Liaison Team, Bylaw Enforcement and Queen’s Student Affairs spoke with students in the University District to share important enforcement information.

“It’s thanks to everyone working together that we’re able to prepare for these kinds of events,” said Kyle Compeau, Manager of Licensing & Enforcement. “Community safety is our number one priority and sharing resources ensures that we are able to respond to the evolving situation, while continuing to support the needs of the large community.”

Kingston Police and the City of Kingston thank all partners involved in the operation, including Queen’s University, Frontenac Paramedics and Kingston Fire & Rescue, who worked together throughout the weekend to ensure a safe St. Patrick’s Day for everyone in the community.

One thought on “Over $19,000 in AMP fines laid over St. Patrick’s Day weekend

  • Will the Kingstonist report how many of these charges are actually prosecuted, (not stayed, nor charges dropped), and fines collected, (not forgiven)?

    One of the problems with Homecoming and St. Patrick’s Day revelries in the University District is that the consequences of breaking the law and violating nuisance party and noise bylaws have often been minimal. Handing out tickets, only to have them dismissed by the courts, (often, as the defendent expresses remorse and claims their career after graduation might suffer), does little to deter these year-after-year street parties. To claim this recent street party as a “success” demonstrates the reluctance of the Kingston Police to admit the scope of the problem. Anywhere else in Kingston, and there would be serious consequences for those who promoted such a street party.

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