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‘Rainbow’ event arrests, citations include drug, traffic offenses
Lumpkin Sheriff’s Office has made 28 arrests, issued 900 citations, warnings to forest visitors
U.S. Forest Service - photo by Ben Hendren

Penalties incurred in the Chattahoochee-Oconee National Forest during the Rainbow Family of Living Light event were primarily for drug- and traffic-related offenses, according to Lumpkin County Sheriff’s Office arrest logs from June 17-30. 

U.S. Forest Service support services specialist Terri Salemi said Thursday there were 28 arrests and about 900 citations and warnings issued.

Salemi was unable to comment on ongoing investigations.

“Historically at past gatherings, some activities have included public nudity, civil disobedience, drug and alcohol abuse, confrontations between ‘Rainbows’ and locals, abandoned or disabled vehicles and traffic congestion and parking for 4,000 to 7,000 vehicles,” Salemi wrote in an email.

The Lumpkin County Sheriff’s Office announced June 13 that participants would start arriving in the forest near the Nimblewill community and the Bull Mountain area. The closest Forest Service roads are 28-1 and 77.

The gathering was expected to draw anywhere from 2,000 to 10,000 people.

The Times requested the Lumpkin County Sheriff’s Office logs between June 17 and June 30 and looked for arrests in these areas.

Offenses cited in the logs included possession of amphetamines, pedestrian under the influence, possession of marijuana, failure to maintain lane, giving false information, possession of heroin, open container, DUI, suspended license and other traffic safety citations.

The addresses of those arrested included Arkansas, Tennessee, South Dakota, North Carolina, Michigan, New York, Florida, Louisiana, Connecticut, Iowa, Alabama, Washington, Colorado, Texas, California and Oregon.

Lumpkin County Sheriff’s Office Lt. Alan Roach said while they had an increased number of contacts with people who live outside their jurisdiction, the event brought a number of “spectators.”