Student-owned hearses of all ages and descriptions were leaving Cambridge last night after Cambridge Police Captain Patrick J. McCarthy announced a drive to rid the streets of the vehicles. McCarthy's campaign was prompted by complaints from Cambridge residents, who said that the hearses were "depressing."
Cambridge patrolman William Barnett said that the problem of hearses parked in front of houses for long periods of time had become a "chronic complaint." "The hearses," he said, "create a bad atmosphere."
Early Morning Attack
In the early hours of this morning the police drive began. Barnett told the CRIMSON last night that policemen would ticket the hearses or tow them away between 2 a.m. and 6 a.m. today. He explained that there is an ordinance in Cambridge which makes it illegal to park a car on the streets between those hours.
"There is nothing unusual in enforcing this ordinance," he said. "A patrolman on duty at that time always tickets or tows away all the cars on one block of his beat. Thursday's early-morning patrolmen will just make sure that they go to the blocks where they know there are hearses."
Hide the Hearses
Hearse-owning students who heard of the police plan immediately tried to get their vehicles out of reach or out of sight. Harry K. Eldridge '57 took his car to the Business School parking lot. He said, "I heard about this towing deal and I decided to move my hearse."
Two freshman hearse owners spent several hours last night trying to find a place where Captain McCarthy's men could not find their vehicle.
An M.I.T. student reported that the police had small chance of ticketing or towing any of the Tech hearses because they are all kept in parking lots, either at the Institute or in Boston.