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News and quick-hit commentary from around mid-Michigan ... from the Morning Sun.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

One person's harassment

Shepherd Village Council member Jim Bush wasn't at this year's Maple Syrup Festival; a family commitment called him to Minnesota. But even in Minnesota, his mobile phone rang with at least one complaint of "police harassment" during the weekend festival.
The details of this harassment: Shepherd officers were asking people not to double-park and block side streets while drivers perused garage sales.
Garage sales are a big deal during the Maple Syrup Festival -- almost every block has at least one. But a lot of the streets in Shepherd are pretty narrow, and the bigger sales attract a lot of customers.
Blocked streets scare the heck out of people who drive ambulances and fire trucks. If somebody's having a stroke or a heart attack, seconds count, and if your house is on fire, minutes seem like hours.
Police Chief Tony Hagen said his department followed long-standing village policy, and asked people nicely to move their cars out of the way. But ask enough people to do something they don't want to do, and presto! Harassment! Threats! Abuse!!!
Hagen said he did end up giving somebody a ticket.
One ticket.
Such torment.


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