SPOKANE, Wash. - If you're prone to sudden outbursts of bad behavior, this is not the weekend to be acting up as downtown Spokane will be filled with law enforcements officers as the Spokane Police Department is aiming to keep Hoopfest a fun, safe event.
One thing you have to realize is that there probably aren't any officers actually playing in the three-on-three tourney because the police department has restricted vacation time and days off so they can boost their staffing levels downtown this weekend.
Approximately 100 local, state and federal law enforcement officers will be working Hoopfest this weekend.
The police department leadership didn't want to leave the rest of the city unprotected so officers were told if they have a badge expect to be on patrol somewhere this weekend, so expect to see a lot of our uniformed officers downtown including Police Chief Frank Straub and his command staff.
What will be harder to spot are the uncover officers from the drug, gang and chronic offenders units. Hoopfest is actually a great place for those officers to arrest people on outstanding warrants who leave their hideouts to show they've got game on the court.
Those plainclothes officers are also standing by to make sure the competitive spirit doesn't spark off the court violence.
"We have a ton of plainclothes officers down there, from various units from throughout the city that help be eyes and ears for us but also react if need be and they also give us a way to surveill and keep an eye on people we think may be a problem," Spokane Police Sergeant J.D. Anderson said.
The Washington State Patrol is also bringing its mobile impaired driving unit to Spokane to assist troopers in processing suspected drunk drivers at Spokane Fire Station One.
There will be extra troopers on duty as well; the State Patrol said since they've stepped up their Hoopfest enforcement, they've cut DUI arrests in half.