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PLAINVILLE - Area police arrested 13 underage young people at a drinking party in a secluded shelter Friday night, the second such raid in recent weeks following the death last month of a King Philip Regional High School senior at another party.

Plainville police - with assistance from officers from North Attleboro, Wrentham and Norfolk - arrested 12 older teenagers and a juvenile at the party being held in a hidden and well-constructed shelter in woods off Walnut Street, Police Chief Edward Merrick said in a news release issued Saturday.

Over the past several days, police received information about the site and checked it out several times, Merrick said. Friday night about 10:30, police raided the site and placed eight males and five females into custody, the police chief said.

"It was a planned, well-orchestrated effort by Plainville police and neighboring communities," said Merrick, who personally commanded the raid. "It was a relatively sophisticated, well-used shelter located well within the woods."

The condition of the site made it clear it was a well-used gathering spot containing a weather-tight shelter covered with leaves and a pit for a fire, which was burning at the time of the arrests, the chief added. Firefighters responded to put out the fire, and the shelter was destroyed.

Several cases of beer, hard liquor and marijuana were removed from the scene, Merrick said.

Those arrested were taken away by a North Attleboro police wagon and several police cruisers from Wrentham and Plainville.

Two teens were from Plainville, three from Wrentham, three from North Attleboro, two from Millis and one each from Franklin and Natick. All were charged with being a minor in possession of alcohol and possession of a Class D substance - marijuana, police said. Their names were not released.

All the teens were bailed to their parents and will be arraigned on Monday. The juvenile will be arraigned at the juvenile court on a later date, police added.

"It seems the issue of teen-aged drinking is approaching epidemic proportions," Merrick said. "The police will redouble our efforts to enforce an existing zero-tolerance policy and to re-enforce the premise that there are indeed consequences for bad or inappropriate behavior and poor judgment," he said.

Twenty area teenagers were arrested on alcohol-related charges at a house party in Norfolk on Saturday night, Nov. 1. Charges were dismissed against 16 of the 20 teens at Wrentham District Court.

That incident at a home on Arnold Road came barely two weeks after Taylor Meyer, a 17-year-old King Philip senior from Plainville, was found dead following an underage party at the former Norfolk airport.

Meyer, who authorities said drowned in a swampy area after being separated from friends, was found after a two-day search.

Although seven of the 20 arrested at the house party were from the KP towns, they were a separate group from those who attended the Oct. 17 airport party, police said.

http://www.thesunchronicle.com/articles/2008/11/09/news/3907452.txt
 
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