City videotapes Unofficial proceedings

By Eric Heisig

While University students and visitors were out on the town for Unofficial St. Patrick’s Day on Feb. 29, city officials were documenting the debauchery.

Cameras were placed around Green Street by the city of Champaign last Friday and Saturday to record the proceedings.

Jerry Schweighart, mayor of the city of Champaign, said the event was documented to see how participants would behave.

“It was done as a way of capturing the event for our use, to evaluate what was going on,” said Scott Friedlein, sergeant for the Champaign Police Department.

“We can use it to assess it and make a better plan in the future.”

The recordings were all made by city volunteers, Friedlein said. But, there was no official verdict as to whether or not the videos would be used as evidence for any activities captured.

Despite these extra precautionary measures, Unofficial turned out to be more docile than originally expected. Schweighart said the videotaping did not produce any significant footage.

Robin Kaler, spokesperson for the University, said the University had no involvement in the city’s documenting process. However, Kaler said the University did have people around Campustown taping scenes from the day for a safety video. Much like the city’s results, nothing significant was captured on tape.

Teri Legner, Champaign deputy liquor commissioner, also involved in the project, could not be reached for comment.

At the Champaign City Council meeting Tuesday night, Schweighart thanked the city officials who had helped with the proceedings, and said they helped to make it a safe and enjoyable weekend for everyone.