Updated: City Manager says State Police aren't overly active in East Providence

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EAST PROVIDENCE — East Providence City Manager Peter Graczykowski said as a result of a meeting with Rhode Island State Police he has been assured that contrary to reports the outside authorities aren't excessively active in the city.

"I met with the Superintendent of State Police Col. Steven O’Donnell today to discuss what appears to be an increased presence of traffic enforcement by State Police in and around East Providence since August 23, 2013," Mr. Graczykowski said in a statement.

"I have been informed that the level of enforcement is not unusual as compared to assistance provided to other communities in Rhode Island, and that some of additional enforcement is related to the upcoming Labor Day holiday weekend," Mr. Graczykowski added. "Since the State Police has state-wide jurisdiction, they do not routinely give advance notice to law enforcement or officials in a particular community where such activity occurs.

"To the best of my knowledge, the East Providence Police Department operations continue as normal."

Added State Police Lieutenant Colonel Michael Winquist in a follow-up statement, "The State Police patrols in the City of East Providence were not at the request of any person. Members of the State Police routinely conduct traffic enforcement in various cities and towns across the State on a daily basis to include the City of East Providence.

"As the Labor Day holiday approaches, we have joined other law enforcement departments across the State in conducting heightened enforcement efforts to combat aggressive driving and those who choose to drive impaired.  This specific initiative is being sponsored by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Department of Transportation Office on Highway Safety.

"The period of heightened enforcement is from Aug. 16 through the Labor Day weekend, ending on Sept. 2. We announced this initiative on Aug. 14, 2013."

On the existence or lack thereof a State Police investigation into any employee of the EPPD, Lt. Col. Winquist offered up a "no comment."

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Jim McGaw

A lifelong Portsmouth resident, Jim graduated from Portsmouth High School in 1982 and earned a journalism degree from the University of Rhode Island in 1986. He's worked two different stints at East Bay Newspapers, for a total of 18 years with the company so far. When not running all over town bringing you the news from Portsmouth, Jim listens to lots and lots and lots of music, watches obscure silent films from the '20s and usually has three books going at once. He also loves to cook crazy New Orleans dishes for his wife of 25 years, Michelle, and their two sons, Jake and Max.