Heavy police presence increased safety this weekend at the Oceanfront

Posted at 11:42 PM, Apr 27, 2014
and last updated 2014-04-27 23:42:16-04

Virginia Beach, Va. - Newschannel 3's cameras were rolling as a fight broke out Saturday night in front of the Dairy Queen at the Oceanfront.

“All of 'em started jumping on the one dude and then when ya'll came around they got up and just fleed,” Kim Howell told NewsChannel 3.

For those who were at beach weekend last year, it was an all too familiar scene. But people at the Oceanfront on Saturday say this year is completely different.

“That's the only thing I've seen, everything else has been people just trying to have fun at the beach,” Howell added.

Even visitors who had no idea Beach Weekend took place this weekend until they got here say it's been a great weekend.

“It's fine, it's fun, a lot of action, the kids seem nice, friendly, good entertainment for old ladies like us, yeah we're having a good time,” a beach visitor said.

Police admit that last year they weren't prepared so they drastically stepped up their presence this time. More than 800 officers patrolled the Oceanfront, including the police chief.

There was an armed robbery at the Hilton Hotel early Saturday, but otherwise police say most incidents were minor.

The numbers of calls and arrests made Saturday night have not been released yet but from 9:00 p.m. Friday night to 3:00 a.m. Saturday morning police say they received 154 calls and made 15 arrests.

Along with responding to calls a few of the officers also surveyed people about how the weekend was going.

“We just want to get their idea of what we can do to make their visit more enjoyable,” Tonya Borman, Master of Police, said.

Police say the general response has been positive and some students tell NewsChannel 3 it's been a much needed break from classes.

”I've had presentations all week long, tests all week long, this is my stress reliever right here, I'm out here to have fun,” a college student enjoying Beach Weekend said.