This story has been updated.
Statistics released Friday by the Myrtle Beach Police Department show that Memorial Day weekend saw modest decreases in arrests, citations issued and traffic collisions.
Two people died in vehicle crashes, and two officers were injured. Lt. Joey Crosby of Myrtle Beach police said on Friday that he did not immediately have the details of the officer injuries.
The holiday weekend, which typically brings a large influx of bikers in spillover from Atlantic Beach’s annual Bikefest, saw a total of 714 individuals arrested from May 26 to 29.
The amount of arrests was a decrease of roughly 9 percent from the year before. According to police statistics, arrests have decreased each year since 2014, when eight shootings over the weekend injured seven people and left three dead.
Traffic collisions decreased 27 percent to a total of 101 reported. Officers did have more calls for service, however, and there were 23 noise tickets issued, almost three times the amount in 2016.
Though 634 officers from outside agencies assisted in the city’s law enforcement efforts—including groups of officers patrolling Ocean Boulevard downtown and a 23-mile traffic loop at night—the total number of overtime hours worked over the course of the weekend slipped 9 percent from 2016.
Myrtle Beach entered its biggest annual draw for law enforcement with a new top cop this year, as Former Chief Warren Gall retired on May 25, the Thursday before the holiday weekend.
Gall did address hundreds of officers from other areas that were working the weekend on his last day, encouraging them to exercise judgment and restraint.
“We don’t want to do any harm. We want everybody to go home safely,” he said during that gathering.
He has been succeeded on an interim basis by Amy Prock, a former assistant chief who is a 20-year veteran of the department.
“We have to give a lot of thanks to Chief Prock and her group,” Mayor John Rhodes told the Sun News on Thursday, before the official police statistics were released. “Chief Prock has been doing this [managing Bikefest efforts] for three years...and she is very very respected by the people who come here to help us out.”
Myrtle Beach police will next contend with the Carolina Country Music Festival, a three-day music festival entering its third year that has drawn as many as 20,000 attendees to the downtown area.