Last weekend’ incident at Thompson Road Park was more than just a fight between some drunk people that turned violent.
As town officials learned during the course of an investigation Sunday night, the folks who came to enjoy soccer on a town-owned field, were also enjoying some alcoholic spirits, in clear violation of the park rules and in violation of the rental contract between the town and the organizer of the soccer games.
So blatant were the violations that some of those in attendance brought beer by the keg. By the keg. That’s a lot of beer. As council member Gra Singleton pointed out Tuesday night, it seems fairly clear that the people at the park knew the town wasn’t checking up behind them.
That’ll change now for sure. Aside from the fact that the renter is expressly forbidden from renting the park for the next month, assistant town manager Rodney Dickerson said the town will now start making regular checks on facilities used during the weekends and that future renters may even be required to pay to have an off-duty police officer or parks and recreation staffer remain on site during the course of an event to ensure these kinds of problems aren’t repeated.
Though it makes for a terrible headline, the good thing is that the stabbing victims were not hurt too seriously. The town is fortunate one of them didn’t die. Either way, it’s a hard lesson for the town to learn that it must police its property in a consistent way to make sure the next scofflaw thinks twice before opening up a keg. Or popping the top on a single bottle while they are at a town park.