Two Students Arrested After Dispute About Canoe in Charles

A graduate student was arrested late yesterday afternoon while defending his wife in an argument with two policemen on the banks of the Charles River in front of Dunster House. The student, John Francis 4G, was charged with obstructing a police officer in the performance of his duties.

Metropolitan, District Commission police also arrested Roger Burkholder '66 on the same charge.

The dispute developed when M.D.C. police officers Paul Welch and Anthony LaConte ordered Francis's wife to take a canoe she was sailing out of the Charles River. With Mrs. Francis in the canoe were her two daughters.

Police said it is illegal to sail a canoe in the Charles without a special permit.

As Mrs. Francis was bringing the canoe ashore, Burkholder, who had been sunbathing on the river, told police not to shout at Mrs. Francis. He was arrested. Mr. Francis was arrested when he entered the dispute later.


The two students were taken to the MDC jail in Boston and released after two hours on $50 bail apiece. They will be arraigned in Third District Court in East Cambridge at 9 a.m. this morning.