We’ve seen some pretty dramatic arrest totals and other alarming stats at country music concerts and festivals over the last few years, but the arrest totals from the Jamboree in the Hills Country Music Festival in Belmont County, Ohio over the weekend have to set a new record. And once again alcohol was a factor in many of the incidents.
The 4-day event from July 16th to 19th was worked by two separate law enforcement organizations. The Belmont County Sheriff’s Department handled security inside the festival, and the Ohio State Highway Patrol everything surrounding the fest.
“Troopers made over 300 arrests, including 20 OBI arrests (drunk driving),” said Lt. James Faunda of the Highway Patrol. “We investigated 23 crashes, and we had a total of over 600 traffic stops.”
Within the festival grounds, the Sheriff’s Department arrested 76 individuals, including 63 of them for underage drinking. One arrest came when four individuals riding in the bed of a pickup truck were ejected from the back when the tailgate came down as the driver peeled out of a camping spot. The four passengers were all transported to the hospital, and the driver was charged with drunk driving and improper start.
There were also 2 arrests for resisting arrest, three for persistent disorderly, two for drug abuse, one of cocaine possession, three for falsification, one for having a fake ID, and one charge of obstruction of justice.
Headliners of the Jamboree in the Hills over the four days included Toby Keith, Dierks Bentley, Florida Georgia Line, Justin Moore, and Lynyrd Skynyrd. The Jamboree has been occurring for over 36 years in eastern Ohio, and says they welcome over 100,000 people to the the festival annually. The event is produced by LiveNation.