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When Weather’s Bad, The Bad Aren’t Stirring

Lower Pottsgrove police officers on patrol at the height of winter storm Jonas

SANATOGA PA – Complain, if you feel so inclined, about the cold temperatures, blustery winds, and extra heavy snowfall that record-breaking winter storm Jonas dumped late last month on Lower Pottsgrove and most of the northeastern United States. On the other hand, you might enjoy the storm’s silver lining, as seen by township Police Chief Michael Foltz.

He knows bad guys hate snow, wind, and cold as much, if not more than, intended victims. As a result, crime was down slightly in the township during January 2016 compared to the same month in two previous years, Foltz reported last Monday (Feb. 1) to the Board of Commissioners.

Highway traffic during the five-day (Jan. 22-26) storm and the accompanying dig-out, when roads were socked in by more than 24 inches of snow and drivers had no urge for travel anywhere except to a comfy chair in front of a television, was down. So were the number of traffic citations issued, Foltz said. Forty-nine tickets had been issued during Jan. 2014, and 62 during January 2015; last month?, only 36.

“That was due to the weather,” the chief acknowledged.

Criminal violations were lower as well: 57 in 2014, 46 in 2015; 44 in 2016. Adult arrests were off too: 18 in 2014, 22 in 2015, and 15 last month. That led to lower overtime costs for the arrest-related activity of his officers, Foltz said, with only $91 spent for less than two extra hours on such tasks.

Sadly, intoxicated drivers failed to heed the example of their more sober neighbors, the chief indicated. Township police made eight driving under the influence arrests last month, up from 1 for the same period in 2015, and 3 in 2014.

Foltz’s “Calls For Service Comparison” was part of the monthly printed report he issues to commissioners for their review, and briefly discusses during their first meeting of the month.

Township Commissioners Meet Feb. 18

Commissioners are next scheduled to meet Feb. 18 (2016; Thursday) at 7 p.m. in the municipal building, 2199 Buchert Rd. The meeting is free to attend and open to the public.

Related (to the Lower Pottsgrove Board of Commissioners’ Feb. 1 meeting):

Photo by Kevin Lytle via Facebook

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