Mayor Menino Announces Misdemeanor Citations
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For Immediate Release
February 16, 2006
Released By:
Mayor's Office
For More Information Contact:
Press Office
pressoffice@cityofboston.gov



Mayor Menino Announces Misdemeanor Citations

Latest Anti-Crime Measure to Help with Quality of Life Issues

Mayor Thomas M. Menino and Police Commissioner Kathleen O'Toole today announced Boston Police Department (BPD) will begin using citation booklets to alleviate disruptive quality of life issues throughout the city. The creation of the new citation books, which officers will carry at all times, allows the police to issue citations for violations of city ordinances on the spot – directly freeing up officer time so police can be available to respond to more serious crimes.

"Today we are addressing what may sometimes appear to be smaller issues, but for those of us familiar with the Broken Window theory and reality, we know that these kinds of community disorder issues are the precursors to the violent crimes that may follow," Mayor Menino said. "These new citation books allow tougher enforcement of the day-to-day quality of life issues which impact our neighborhoods. I am proud to announce this new tool that will give police more law enforcement options when dealing with these critical quality of life issues."

Misdemeanor citations can be issued for offenses ranging from loud house parties to improperly disposed trash. Each citation will carry a fine which must be paid within 21 days or the case will be referred for criminal prosecution. These new misdemeanor citation books will aid the police in addressing quality of life violations such as loud noise, litter, and public drinking. They will help streamline and update an existing process that was underutilized, including a new training for all officers.

"This citation book gives our police officers another tool on their tool belt to address quality of life crimes in our neighborhoods. It allows our officers more freedom to engage in community-focused problem solving," Police Commissioner Kathleen O'Toole said.

The revamped Misdemeanor Citation Process is another issue coming out of the Mayor's Strategic Crime Council that meets on a weekly basis to implement a wide cross-section of crime reduction tactics.

The partnership the city has established with Boston Municipal Court Chief Justice Johnson and Clerk Magistrate Daniel Hogan around this revamped process is key to the effectiveness of using these books. This process will provide sanctions for repeat quality of life offenses without taking valuable police resources off of the streets.

"These citations will deter repeat offenders by encouraging accountability. We are hopeful these changes will prompt more residents to report quality of life problems to the police, knowing that action will be taken," Mayor Menino added.

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