As hoards of Texas Tech fans descended upon San Marcos last weekend for the university’s first FBS football game, the San Marcos Police Department started handing out citations.
From Friday, Sept. 7 to Saturday, Sept. 8, SMPD reported multiple violations. There were four suspicious persons arrests, one harassment ticket, nine public intoxication incidents and five minors in possession were reported that weekend.
Officers also had to contend with the noise that comes along with a record 33,006 fans in Bobcat Stadium, many of whom came from Lubbock to see the Red Raiders face off against the Bobcats.
“For both Saturday and Sunday, the main problem was noise violations,” said Chase Stapp, SMPD Assistant Chief of Operations.
SMPD and the University Police Department had been planning for the onslaught of fans since January. The weekend started with an unofficial event, Rally on The Square, when students and fans gathered Friday night.
The increase in pedestrian traffic on The Square during the weekend prompted SMPD to add four officers to its normal two officer downtown patrol, according to SMPD Commander Kelly Earnest. There was a spike in traffic in downtown San Marcos Friday evening.
“It became dangerous for pedestrians to walk on The Square because the sidewalks became so packed. They eventually had to start walking on the street,” Earnest said. “That is where accidents happen.”
SMPD reported eight traffic incidents, including five accidents, two hit and runs and one traffic hazard. Earnest said he was “pleasantly surprised” by these numbers, citing that it “could have been a lot worse.”
was called to assist SMPD in The Square, but focused its attention and manpower on the football game and tailgate, said UPD administrative sergeant Adam Rodriguez.
“There were a lot of people at tailgate,” Rodriguez said. “But as far as incidents go, there were no major incidents at tailgate or at the game.”
“We had about 56 officers working both in and outside of the stadium,” Rodriguez said. “We had more people, and we had more cause for service, but there was nothing that was out of the ordinary.”
Overall, both SMPD and UPD were pleasantly surprised with the outcome of the weekend.
“Although there were some unfortunate events that occurred, all-in-all it was a successful weekend,” Earnest said.