Reporting Jim Armstrong
PORTSMOUTH, NH (CBS) – People who work in downtown Portsmouth, New Hampshire see it all the time: Once the bars and clubs on Vaughan Mall get out, the trouble starts.
“Sometimes people do get in big fights,” explains Bill Duntley, who works at a local restaurant. As his shift ends around midnight, he sees intoxicated patrons all over the area.
“People just act stupid,” he explains. “It’s not uncommon where I work across the street for us to have to deal with drunk customers acting the fool late at night. They come out and, of course, you know how alcohol makes people act I guess. A lot of the time men feel very competitive if they’re trying to pick up women there I guess.”
Locals site a restaurant and bar called The Page as a source of the trouble, but police say it’s the whole area that can cause problems.
Investigators say the fights typically start inside the establishments, fueled by booze and flaring tempers.
There was another big one early Sunday morning, when a man was beaten so badly, police found him just lying on the sidewalk when they arrived.
His attacker took off into the night.
“Sometimes we do have people that leave the bars a little too intoxicated, or a little too aggressive,” says Det. Capt. Corey MacDonald of the Portsmouth Police Department. “We have problems in that area due to it’s dark, it’s where a lot of people park, and we have kind of a bottleneck there sometimes.”
Last December, another man leaving The Page was savagely attacked in this alley.
In May of this year, two men attacked a veteran outside The Page. They beat him so severely, they ruptured his bladder.