Two Charged With Underage Drinking During State Championship Game At Rentschler Field

State police say four people were found "incapacitated" in the bathroom during the game and were referred for medical attention. Two people, one 17 years old and another 18 years old, were charged with possession of alcohol by a minor.


Connecticut State Police say four people were found "incapacitated" in the bathroom during the Class L state championship game between Daniel Hand High School in Madison and Windsor High School Saturday at Rentschler Field in East Haven, CT.

State police have jurisdiction in the stadium and in the parking lot.

Lt. Paul Vance, a state police spokesman, said "four people were found in the bathroom incapacitated and in need of medical attention" during the game. They were taken to the first aid station and it was handled as a medical incident, he said. He said he did not know if they were taken by ambulance for additional treatment, or released to a parent or adult.

He said he did not know the age or hometown of the four people, but that "they were most probably students."

He said there were two arrests, one of someone who was 17 who was charged with possession of alcohol by a minor and one of someone who was 18 who was charged with possession of alcohol and possession of marijuana.

He said he did not have information immediately available about the names or hometowns of the people who were arrested.

patricia donohue December 12, 2012 at 12:32 AM
I thought this format was some kind of conversation. Guess not. That's ok. Sleep tight.
Pem McNerney (Editor) December 12, 2012 at 12:32 AM
"There are consequences for drinking at such a young age and that you disapprove." I think if someone said it that way the kid would immediately tune you out. =) I guess part of the conversation I'm trying to get started here is ... how do you talk about kids about this very important issue, and get them to listen?
patricia donohue December 12, 2012 at 12:34 AM
You've covered all the bases.
Pem McNerney (Editor) December 12, 2012 at 12:38 AM
FYI folks: comments on moderation because I don't want identifying information on minors to inadvertently slip through ... so if comments take a a little while to appear, that is why ...
jill Swimmer December 12, 2012 at 12:39 AM
Thank you Pat Donohue for your reply and emphasizing the importance of parental role modeling. Also, Pem, if parents want to know more of how to get involved in communication with their young adults, please let them know about M.A.D.E. There are monthly meetings open to the community, parents, ect.
Janet December 12, 2012 at 12:50 AM
I don't think there is a "one size fits all" way to talk to kids about it... First time or fifth time? Very different needs for conversation or more.
Pem McNerney (Editor) December 12, 2012 at 12:57 AM
Good points Janet, Linda, Jill and Pat. To Jill's point ... MADE does have meetings open to all ... if you go to http://www.madisonct.org/ and click on town meetings, you can get information there about meetings. Also, additional resources available at http://www.madisonct.org/MADE/ ... MADE Board members include Chair - Lori Lodge Vice Chair - Tina Garrity Secretary- Jeanne Stevens Treasurer- David Melillo So if you see any of them around town, they can fill you in. And Catherine Barden, quoted in the article, is an excellent resource. She's my go-to girl when I have an OMG moment or question about underage drinking/drugs.
Linda December 12, 2012 at 01:11 AM
Sorry but it may be bad parents. Too many I know don't think it is a big deal if their kids get drunk. They think it is a rite of passage.
Fred December 12, 2012 at 02:47 AM
The critical word here is "abuse," not "alcohol." There is nothing wrong with teenagers drinking alcohol. When my kids were teenagers, they were permitted to drink at home, and there was no problem then, and there is no problem now.
ted Aub December 12, 2012 at 12:47 PM
Lets retract the fingers that are pointing everywhere , times and values have changed .There are some great social service programs out there with dedicated people running them , but the majority of the interested people ( both parents and young adults ) are not the problem people . Its the unaffiliated that need to be reached . After living on the shoreline for the majority of my adult life , I have been to many sporting events mainly football . I have seen more adult drinking than young adults on a Thanksgiving day morning game between Guilford and Madison over the years . The adults have their booze in different / unmarked containers , like coffee mugs etc. Do you think the young adults don't know that . Role model is everything here folks . When you address a problem with openness and honesty I guarantee you will get better results
Daria Novak December 12, 2012 at 01:12 PM
The extremely liberal, "anything goes," attitude of our society of late too often results in problems such as mentioned in this article. Madison parents need to stop being their kid's best friend& to start parenting. Yes, "stuff" happens & that's part of life. Hopefully, our youth will get survive it without lasting damage. However, when that "stuff" is condoned by passive adults, aided by the very people who are the authority figures charged with setting boundaries & nurturing the child, the result is out of control teens. Given that the teen brain governing self-limiting and cautious behaviors is not yet fully developed, most teens (dare I say all) feel no problem with "experimenting" with risky behaviors despite the consequences. It's our job as parents to ensure we raise our children to be productive adults. High school "kids" are NOT adults despite their desire to do everything an adult does. Parents need to step up & do the hard work. I think the complaining sound of "Mommmmm" will ring forever in my ears, but I also recognize that each year my teens also thank me in many ways for being there to listen, for setting the rules that offer them the security they need to operate in their expanding world, & for helping them to avoid implusive decisions with potentially dire consequences. Have the guts to say "no." Refuse to accept your teens "everyone else is doing it" as the "get out of jail free" card for stressful parenting decisions. It's worth it!
Mike Atkins December 12, 2012 at 01:49 PM
Intersting Pem that you won't release the names. Never seems to be a problem releasing names from the DUI or B&E police blotter. Could it be that the names are from someone's neighborhood down Neck Road or perhaps even a friend?
Pem McNerney (Editor) December 12, 2012 at 02:28 PM
The state police did not provide me with any names, so I don't know who they are or where the live, or even if they are from Madison or Windsor or another town. I probably could get the name of the 18 year old arrested and charged in another town, but I don't track down the names of other 18 year old kids arrested and charged in other towns, so why should I do that here? It's enough that the job requires, as mandatory, that local editors to do it in their own towns. And, yes, I've posted the names of my friends and neighbors arrested and charged. There isn't much I hate about my job or that keeps me up at night. I hate that and it keeps me up at night. Still, I post the blotters as they are provided to me by the police department. I do not omit names. I understand that some (although certainly not all) in the community view publication of the blotter, with names, as a community service. Still, track down the name of this 18 year old? Want me to do that, Mike? Track down the names of the 18 year olds who are arrested and charged in other towns? Would that make your day, give you something to gossip about over your morning coffee? Because community service or not, we all know that's the other role the police blotter plays. The names of the people referred for medical treatment and the name of the minor are none of my business or yours. I do hope the police made it the business of the parents of those minors. That's for them to deal with.
Pem McNerney (Editor) December 12, 2012 at 02:31 PM
Good point (and one made earlier by Patricia as well) about modeling good behavior. Madison is definitely a Red Solo Cup town when it comes to community events (and coffee mugs and Poland Spring bottles). Parents stash their alcohol in it to get away with drinking alcohol at alcohol-free events. Sometimes they don't even bother to put it in another container and drink openly at event where alcohol is banned. Kids see, kids do ...
Ann December 12, 2012 at 02:36 PM
Is a State football game considered a school function? The reason I ask is that I know we've had conversations at PTO meetings in the past where Mrs Britton described action she took several years ago to have a limo where some students were drinking alcohol turned away from the prom and sent home. Her threat to do so in the future seemed to get rid of the problem with alcohol at the prom. Maybe if we offered a supporters bus for a small fee, with adult monitoring, kids would be less likely to drive on their own and possibly get into trouble. It might be a lot of fun also. I'm assuming they didn't come with their families or the band. I'm not even sure they were Madison kids.
Mike Atkins December 12, 2012 at 02:53 PM
So why print the article in the first place? To some how lessen the football team or to allow the right wing christians to come out and say we are holier than though because we tell our kids no drinking. Not sure what you're looking for?
Paul Schaefer December 12, 2012 at 02:53 PM
I hate to say it, but the horse has left the barn on this one. In order for our children to have a definitive sense of right and wrong in the teen years it must be based on a firm foundation that begins in childhood. A foundation that is built on PARENTING and involvement. Both require diligence, time and energy. Easy to say but hard to do in the socioeconmic world we live in. But it is something we MUST do as caring parents. And yes, even under the best of circumstances people do stupid things. Lets hope this is their most valuable life lesson. Make everyone aware of the situation and of the definitive consequences.......... Unfortunately our society has diminished the importance of individual responsibility; this goes for kids and parents. I have to agree with Daria on this one. All of our friends and neighbors would be served well to read and internalize what Daria's message.............
M.A.D.E. in Madison December 12, 2012 at 02:58 PM
In Madison, 91% of students feel that their parents disapprove of them using alcohol. That is a great number! Starting with that foundation, and having the conversation with your kids about boundaries and family rules as well as serving as a positive role model are key steps that will help build your child’s resistance skills. It’s also important to remember that a majority our young people don’t drink; but of the 35% that do drink, half of them binge drink. That’s a very dangerous road for them to be heading down at such a young age. We want to help all of our youth to have the self-worth and confidence to make healthy choices.
Linda December 12, 2012 at 03:03 PM
I think it is irresponsible for parents to allow their Children under 21 to possess alcohol. It is against the law and science shows brains are still growing and any alcohol can damage brain cells.
Pem McNerney (Editor) December 12, 2012 at 03:11 PM
@ Mike Atkins Q: So why print the article in the first place? To some how lessen the football team or to allow the right wing christians to come out and say we are holier than though because we tell our kids no drinking. Not sure what you're looking for? A: Good question. Shortly after the game I heard about this, then I heard about it again and again anecdotally. What I heard was that parents saw lots of kids sick from drinking in the bathrooms and that some were taken away by ambulance because they were unconscious or nearly so. Binge drinking. This surprised me and when I said so, some told me to stop being so naive, that it happens. So I checked it out and I thought if I found it surprising, that other parents might as well (as in not know that there are some kids who drink this much often enough that some don't find it surprising) and that it would be worthwhile for parents to have a conversation with their kids about it. I'm sorry that it, for some, lessens the football team (although it shouldn't because clearly members of the team were on the field or sidelines, and not in the bathroom throwing up from drinking too much). Still, I see what you are saying, reporting this lessens the golden glow around the win somewhat. Still, it's news (names or no names), and I was hoping the information, along with the tips provided by Catherine, would provide a starting place for parents to talk with kids.
Pem McNerney (Editor) December 12, 2012 at 09:34 PM
@ MA To the point you made earlier ... while I think it's important to report on this kind of information and have a conversation about it .... what a shame that "Two Charged With Underage Drinking During State Championship Game At Rentschler Field" is now the top story rather than "Daniel Hand Successfully Defends Class L Football Title With 23-6 Win Over Windsor."
concerned parent December 12, 2012 at 10:48 PM
I believe if you check the records you will find the two were charged with possession only and the police allowed the 18 year old to drive home. The 17 yr old would have been allowed to drive but had to be released to a parent or guardian. In other words they were not intoxicated.
A faithful friend December 13, 2012 at 03:59 AM
Great kids AND great parents can make a mistake. In this case, they both are great. It's called a mistake for a reason. Move on...things happen for a reason and in this case, the reason is so it will never happen again.
concerned parent December 13, 2012 at 12:39 PM
You're Right Faithful. One lesson not mentioned at all. Beware of who and what you allow in your car or the car you are driving. You never know when 5-O will look in the car and the owner/driver will take the rap.
Janet December 13, 2012 at 12:41 PM
Totally agree. This is not an OMG moment. Teens drink sometimes, and yes parents should not enable that and should talk to them, but everyone should stop acting so shocked over this. My friends and I drank sometimes in HS, our parents did not know, but they were good parents and we were just trying to be cool. Now we are all successful adults and not one alcoholic in the bunch.
Janet December 13, 2012 at 12:48 PM
And yes these kids went overboard... And this will likely teach them a lesson. But they shouldn't automatically be labeled as problem kids.
Linda December 13, 2012 at 04:04 PM
Wonder what a great parent is these days?
Janet December 13, 2012 at 05:44 PM
A great parent is one who leads by example, listens to their kids, enables them to grow and flourish and disciplines them when necessary. A great parent prepares their kids for the ups and downs of life and provides guidance on how to deal with these. A great parent does not foster a sense of entitlement in kids and installs values such as generosity. Most people aren't great parents all the time; they do the best that they can.
Pem McNerney (Editor) December 13, 2012 at 05:53 PM
Like. Well said. I might suggest steady, consistent rules and guidance. Discipline when needed, again applied consistently. Helping them find out what their passion is and encouraging them to follow it, even, sometimes, if it's not exactly what you might have picked for them. Unconditional love, when they're guilty, innocent or, as often is the case at this age, wavering somewhere in between.
patricia donohue December 13, 2012 at 10:12 PM
We know that bad things happen to good people. Thankfully, those teens are safe, healthly and being cared for by their loving and supportive parents...and not the victims of a harsher life lesson involving a cop at the door bringing bad news.


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