CHICAGO — Crime was down at Lollapalooza this year thanks to tightened security measures in and around the concert grounds, Chicago Police Supt. Garry McCarthy said Monday.
"We had some tickets issued but the biggest thing we had was ambulance responses. It was probably at least 80 a day," McCarthy said, saying many of the medical emergencies were alcohol-related.
"The fact is very little crime, very little problems," said McCarthy, adding that festival producers also told him the event, which drew some 300,000 people, went smoothly.
McCarthy pointed to the large metal fences that surrounded the fest grounds as one reason for less crime this year.
"It stopped the fence jumping, and those are generally the rowdy kids that run through the crowd causing trouble," McCarthy said.
A State Department global warning to American travelers last week also led police to take more precautionary steps, though there was no known terrorism threat to Chicago at anytime, he added.
Police beefed-up security, paid closer attention during bag checks and added more undercover officers to big crowds in and around the festival grounds.
"We had to take some extra steps, which we did, and we're thankful nothing happened," McCarthy said.
In a statement, Mayor Rahm Emanuel also lauded Lollapalooza's success.
"Chicago is a great music city and I'm thrilled that Lollapalooza was again such a positive event for the city, attracting high-caliber musical artists and fans from all over," Emanuel said. "Chicago is perfectly suited to host this world-class music festival that is framed by the beautiful backdrop of our skyline."
Organizers said 100,000 people attended each day of the festival, which is in its second year of a 10-year deal with the city.
While the exact economic impact of this year's fest has not been determined, Lollapalooza organizers said,the 2012 fest infused $120 million dollars into the local economy.
McCarthy made the comments at the Deering Police District headquarters in Bridgeport during his weekly news conference to display illegal guns that had been seized, and he once again renewed his calls for tougher sentences for those convicted of gun crimes.