OCPD to increase presence, improve deployment techniques following boardwalk assaults

OCEAN CITY, Md. – A boardwalk brawl gone viral has sent shockwaves throughout Ocean City.

“We just saw all of them beating up on that guy, it was horrible,” said one visitor, Joseph Fugazzi.

Assaults taking place Tuesday night into Wednesday morning on 4th, 11th, and 16th street have forced the Ocean City Police Department and town officials to come up with a plan to stop the violence. Their focus? Strengthening their enforcement strategies and deployment techniques.

“Within the last week we have seen a lot of assaults on the boardwalk, so we need to prioritize. That’s where we need to have our officers. We’ve reached out to our allied agencies such as Worcester County and MSP. They will be seen in town, assisting us,” said Ocean City Police Department Deputy Communications Manager, Ashley Miller.

Some businesses on the boardwalk say they support the increased presence of police in the area.

“Last night I got off at like 9:30 and we walked up and down the boardwalk, my sister and I, and we saw a lot more cops. It definitely seemed like it was a lot more under control,” said Samantha Colbert, a barista at A Latte Enjoy.

While others say they don’t have much confidence that they’ll see any changes. Especially after the way they say they’ve seen police being treated following the death of George Floyd.

“During the past events with the Black Lives Matter protests and everything, the authorities are kind of like not important that much, and they’re kind of being bullied,” said salesman at Sunglass City, Dorin Matyas.

Despite this, many hope the police department’s efforts will keep the resort town a safe and fun place to visit.

“We want to keep it as a family resort and we don’t want it to become some crazy city that you can’t control,” said Colbert.

Officials add that the reason why there weren’t any officers patrolling near the areas when these fights broke out was because officers were responding to other calls that night. They add that they’re asking for the public’s help in identifying the suspects in all three assaults on the boardwalk and ask that you contact the police department at 410-520-5136. You can even submit tips anonymously.

Categories: Local News, Maryland