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Dallas: Photo by Cathy Romeo Who shot the Band? -------- Not CBS --------- French horn player Margo Buckels The Sentinel parking lot was crowded with family and well-wishers as the bus caravan carrying the MCHS Band returned from Dallas Jan. 6. After marching in the Cotton , Bowl Parade, traveling more than 3,000 miles in 10 days and spending more than $80,000, the MCHS Marching Band ’ s six-bus caravan pulled into a festive Sentinel park ing lot Jan. 6. Greeted by television cameras, Mayor Bill Cregg, and numerous well-wishers, Hellgate band director , Carl Smart described the home coming as “ just super. ” Although many students said that they had a good time, most were disappointed about not being seen in the parade on television. Along the parade route, a parade employee should have stopped the band while the CBS television cam eras were turned off during a com mercial break. The band stopped, but only for about ten seconds and then proceeded to march past the in-operating cameras. “ When we first hear about it (not being on television), we thought that it was a joke, ” said' flutist Kim Newman. But when it was discovered that it was no joke, many of the band members were bitter. Smart • said, “ I guess that I was just thor oughly disgusted. ” “ It was the pits, ” commented junior alto sax player John Kirk patrick. Not all of the band members, however, felt this way. Senior said, “ I think it (the televison mixup) really made the trip unique. We got a lot more publicity than if we had just gone through the pa rade as expected. But who remem bers the bands on TV? I mean people always get up to go to the bathroom when the bands come by... (but) I was really bummed out when I first found out. ” Buckles was correct about get ting more publicity. The band ap peared on the front page of the Jan. 2 Missoulian, appeared on the Good Morning America show, the local Dallas news, Missoula ’ s KPAX and DECI television stations and radio commentator Paul Harvey talked about them. KPAX received more calls about the band on New Years Day than it has ’ received before. A KPAX spokesman estimated that they received between 300 to 400 calls on Jan. 1. Despite the band ’ s disappoint ment over the parade, the rest of the trip “ went quite well, ” Smart said. Among the sights that the}' saw in Texas were the Dallas Zoo, Houston, the NASA Space Center, the Gulf of Mexico (where they swam in 75 degree water) and a Texas-style barbaque in Dallas. Despite the television mixup, the band still performed well, Smart said. “ I was so excited. They played great. I had tears in my eyes. ” Students bring co| High school students don ’ t seem to be as smart as they were when Rusty Wickman was in high school cruising Higgins Avenue. “ We never got caught, ” said Wickman, a Missoula par- trolman, of the days when he did his “ share of ripping up the drag. ” Now Wickman spends part of his time catching law- breaking students on the drag and he said the majority seem to think it is “ no big deal ” when they are caught doing some thing wrong. Downtown “ is the worst place to drink, unless you want to get caught, ” said Wickman. “ Kids don ’ t realize that their littering and hell raising draws attention. ” Police Captain Doug Chase said that young people “ bring the heat on themselves ” by drinking, racing and littering on the drag. “ If some realized that that stuff draws attention and they were to reverse their behavioral pattern they wouldn ’ t see us, ” Chase said. Chase said that 98 percent of the contact that police have with people comes from people attractig attention to them selves or from people calling the police who then send an of ficer. “ We ’ re not out to hassle people, but we ’ re going to do our job, ” Chase said. Alchohol causes the most problems that police have to deal with. Eighty percent of police dealings on night shifts are related to alchohol, said Chase and sometimes that figure is higher. “ One of the big problems that makes me sick is that a lot of young people are damn near hooked on alchohol. They can not make it through a weekend without it and they cannot drink without drinking to excess, ” said Chase. on themselves with drag hell raising “ It goes back to alchohol. The first time I walk out of my office to see what the problem is, it ’ s booze. It ’ s the same with adults, ” Chase said. Wickman said that after 2 a.m. bar closing there are hit- and-run accidents and a lot of fights, sometimes with knives or guns. “ Alchohol brings out the best in people, ” Wickman said. Police have juvenile problems with traffic infractions, al chohol, theft, shoplifting and vandalism, said Chase. The most serious, said Chase, are vandalism and theft. Vandals destroy others' property and a person convicted of theft “ has that al batross to bear record-wise for the rest of his life, ” said Chase. Drinking can be serious because it causes accidents, fights and it contributes to the reason for vandalism and shoplifting, Chase said. Shoplifting and vandalism are increasing “ simply because so many people get away with it, ” said Chase. “ Van dalism is done under the cloak of darkness. ” Problems on the drag have decreased since parking around Circle Square, or “ the oval, ” was outlawed because the kids cannot congregate on the drag as easily, said Chase. “ That was the last thing we wanted to do, but we had to. It was at the point where people were insaid. Most problems, such as fighting or “ tipping and tossing ” beer cans, occur on side streets around Higgins, said Wick man, and the police are able to catch law-breakers more easily on side streets. The police often wait in squad cars in alleys on side streets and watch those cruising for traffic or drinking viola tions. Wickman said that a “ classic case ” of drinking on the drag would happen when a teen-ager drives by a waiting police car and tips his beer so the police can see it. As the police pull the car over, the student will lean forward, an action which is easily visible to the police who are following, to hide alchohol under the seat. The officer will confiscate the beer, pouring out any open beer, and decide what action to take. The police could just ask the student to go home, or take him to the station and have his parents called to pick him up. Police have a lot of discretion to decide what action to take, said Wickman. “ I take a look at a kid, a juvenile, and if I think he has a problem, like drag racing or drinking I won ’ t let him go. If he's out every weekend drunk and he might kill someone then I ’ U write him, ” he said. But if a kid “just made a mistake ” the officer might simply give a warning. For example, Wickman said that one student, who would not be given a break by police, had been in trouble with police continually. He ran from the police, got in a high-speed chase and wrecked his car. “ He said if he had made the last comer we never would have caught him,” said Wickman. “ He didn ’ t learn anything. ” “ For me to pick up some one who is critically injured under 20 is a hell of a lot tougher than writing a citation for beer, ” said Chase. “ Hell, I feel good. It ’ s not just an arrest. That person is in one piece. ” Police usually have six to eight cars on the drag and their efforts are little more than “ babysitting, ” said Wickman. “It ’ s too bad. We have better things to do, but also a lot of the problems on the drag aren ’ t going to go away. ” If students are caught breaking the law, such as drinking beer, “ truth is the best, ” he said. By lying or trying to hide the alchohol, kids just risk making an officer come down harder on them. Students in trouble should remain calm and communicate with the police, without endangering their rights, said Chase. Arguing with police will seldom help. Many people in trouble “ take off like a house on fire and make the officer draw a stiffer line, ” said Chase. “ Belliger ence will not get you anywhere. Every weekend, as regular as can be, someone will come bouncing in through and run off at the mouth and make things worse. ”