Lexington prepares for the chaos that could come from UK fan celebrations
Ahead of the UK's Sweet Sixteen appearance, Lexington officials are taking steps to keep fans in line.
Wednesday, March 25th 2015, 4:35 pm EDT
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) - Lexington police are preparing for UK celebrations -- and they say they don't want to see burning couches and people out of control.
To keep fans in line, Lexington officials are taking steps before the Wildcats even play in the Sweet Sixteen.
The Lexington Fire Department distributed door hangers offering tips on celebrating safely. They're partnering with police and city officials to make sure celebrations don't get out of hand.
"I say regardless of their notices, people will burn stuff," said Brent Hitchings, a Kentucky student who lives on State Street, where much of the rioting takes place.
Code enforcement also plastered notices on every door in the "emergency area," the part of Lexington that will be monitored regularly for nuisance violations like indoor furniture outside.
"I really don't think it will make a difference. I mean, it didn't do any good last year, so I'm really excited to see what happens," said UK Student Matthew Williams, who also lives on State Street.
UK Chief of Police Joe Monroe is a lifelong Wildcats fan and wants his team to win, but knows the chaos it could bring. His officers will begin conducting extra patrols Thursday night in anticipation of a win.
"Don't do anything that's going to get anybody hurt, either yourself or somebody around you. We always encourage everybody to celebrate responsibly," said Chief Monroe.
He believes their best line of defense might be the weather.
"That will help us a lot on the law enforcement side because not many people will want to be outside in freezing rain," said Chief Monroe.
"I don't think the weather's going matter at all," said Williams, who is a junior at UK.
The Wildcats take on West Virginia at 9:45 p.m. on Thursday.
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