Should Alcohol be Banned at Lake Greenbelt? - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

Should Alcohol be Banned at Lake Greenbelt?

Violence is escalating at Lake Greenbelt, and after several rough weekends, the Donley County Sheriff is saying enough is enough. He is recommending banning alcohol from the lake.

Sheriff Butch Blackburn says more than 90% of the 911 calls from the lake are alcohol related... More and more often involving weapons.

Waves rolling onshore... Boats speeding across the water... the sights and sounds of Lake Greenbelt.

But ask some veteran lake-goers and they'll say that's not all. Charlene Mansel says there are "broken beer bottles, people getting cut, people getting in boat wrecks, kids drowning."

Scenes like that are the reason Sheriff Blackburn is recommending banning alcohol at the lake.

Lake-goer Paul Estrada says, "Maybe if you're getting out of hand or something, but if you're responsible, I don't see any point in banning alcohol."

Problem is, Blackburn says people are getting out of hand.

They're injuring themselves... "Swimming from the boat to shore and accidentally stabbed herself in the leg while she was carrying an open knife."

And injuring others. "A simple fight broke out due to somebody urinating next to somebody's tent. Alcohol related. The guy went and drug out a shotgun and went out and blasted it away."

Some say banning alcohol all together may be a bit drastic. People like Andy Brockenbaek. "If people want to drink out here maybe they should designate one spot for the people that want to drink and another spot for the people that don't want to drink."

Blackburn says having a partial ban like Lake Meredith would most likely be too hard to control.

Banning alcohol was brought up to the Lake Greenbelt board several years ago, but the idea was shot down.

As for this time around, the Sheriff is not sure when his recommendation will be heard by the board, but he of course hopes it will be in the near future.

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