NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTN) – New Haven Police have spent a lot of time cracking down on the quality of life issues such as street racing and dirt bike riding, but now there’s another problem on the list of complaints from residents: Noisy car stereos.
Imagine a car stereo so loud you can park it on New Haven’s Long Wharf and hear it all the way on the other side of New Haven Harbor and beyond. New Haven Police say that’s what’s going on some nights, and they have a new weapon to stop it.
Auto sound systems have never been more powerful. Dennis Dupont knows because he owns Auto Pro in Hamden. He says this summer, people started asking for really loud sound systems.
“Enough that you can hear them a couple blocks away,” Dupont said. How about across the harbor? “That is possible, yes.”
He sees certain high-powered hardware very much in demand right now.
“Like a compression horn driver,” Dupont said, hefting the 20-pound horn. “So, this will throw vocals out for across the harbor. A couple of these in the car.”
That is exactly what New Haven’s Mayor is hearing from people who live near the harbor.
“We’ve been dealing with a lot of noise issues that have particularly impacted the East Shore and are emanating from Long Wharf with these mega-speakers that people have in their cars,” said Mayor Justin Elicker (D-New Haven)
New Haven Police talked it over with state prosecutors, and they’ve been told if the cars are loud enough, instead of just writing a ticket, they can now arrest people for disorderly conduct, a misdemeanor. They made their first two arrests Friday.
“The noise was enough on-scene that they were able to make the arrest for disorderly conduct, not just creating a public disturbance,” explained Chief Renee Dominguez of the New Haven Police Department
With that music on the harbor that keep people up at night, Chief Dominguez wants the word to get out that cranking your tunes can have serious consequences.
“Hopefully that will deter people,” Dominguez said. “Even if they’re not being arrested, the fact that other people, while everyone is out in that area, are getting arrested, hopefully people will realize that we are not tolerating this.”
The new police district manager in the East Shore is going to be listening for the music every night, and all the officers have been told that, if the music is loud enough, yes, they can arrest people for that misdemeanor.