Dover PD Tries New Tactic to Deal with Drugs at Firefly - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Dover PD Tries New Tactic to Deal with Drugs at Firefly

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DOVER, Del. (WBOC) - Woodstock to Firefly - it's a fact that illegal drug use has long been a part of music festivals. Even though the presence of drugs is basically inevitable, police and security staff still work to minimize their impact on the festival.

Walk through the crowd at Firefly, take a whiff of the air around you, it's likely you'll smell marijuana. WBOC staff has seen people smoking marijuana.

It's something people know is around. WBOC spoke with Shailee Dave, who is camping with her friends.

"At something like this, I think it could be a problem," she said. "People get really excited, want to hang out with their friends, maybe meet new people and do something like might regret."

Dealing with drugs is a challenge for police, and this year Dover PD is trying a new tactic.

As music fans enter the festival, they'll find what police call an "Amnesty Box" out front of the main entrance.

"What this will allow people to do is go up and anything illegal they may have on their person that they do not want to be caught with, they will have the opportunity to put it in this box. They will have no consequences or repercussions from doing so," said Lt. Jason Pires, a spokesman for Dover PD.

WBOC waited at the red barrel for about 20 minutes and didn't see anyone put anything in.

Festival Director Greg Bostrom says law enforcement maintains a good balance.

"Our public safety partners do a excellent job screening fans and keeping those illicit substances out. At the same time they make sure it doesn't feel like Big Brother is watching you at every turn inside the festival."

Lt. Pires says drugs is just one of many things officers have to deal with at Firefly. Others include crowd control, assaults and thefts.

On the whole, he says for an event of its size, things go very smoothly.

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