Patrols put even the spookiest Halloween revelers at ease

Patrols put even the spookiest Halloween revelers at ease

"I feel safe, I feel safe. I think everything is going to be alright," a New Orleans man in a vampire suit said.

When vampires, woopie cushions and members of the band Kiss all say they're not worried about the night, you know there's something more than just Halloween spirit walking the streets.

"All weekend, absolutely so far. It's been a great [police] presence," a man in an Elf costume said.

The presence is extra important on Halloween with its recent history of extreme violence. In 2011, two were killed and 14 others shot and injured.

The crowds signified a collective understanding that the deadly Halloween night three years ago has left the minds of the tourists, but aspects of the first response preparation is here to stay.

What isn't here to stay is the added manpower.

Since July, state troopers have answered more than 3,500 calls for service and made more than 900 arrests. However, the extra deployment ends Sunday.

"It's always a loss when you have something and then you no longer have it, but we're confident that we can still provide adequate protection for the citizens of new orleans and more specifically the downtown area where the troopers were," NOPD Chief Michael Harrison said.

District Attorney Leon Cannizzaro said he'd like his office to provide the funding for troopers to work overtime patrolling the city's interstates and highways.

"I think it frees up the NOPD to concentrate on the violent criminals and you'll find many times that narcotics and gun charges are made by very simple traffic stops," Cannizzaro said.

"If we're able to be visible on those highways and streets and interstate around new orleans, the criminals are going to see that," said Col. Mike Edmondson said.

So, the short glimpses of troopers between the sea of skeletons and Where's Waldos certainly won't be the last time State Police are seen on Bourbon Street.

"The Colonel and I speak very frequently, and he's committing to sending his troopers into New Orleans for any event that we need them for," Harrison said.

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