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A Massachusetts police department asked would-be criminals to 'hold off' during heat wave. They listened

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New Yorkers cooled off in a fountain, as the city battles a relentless heat wave.
USA TODAY

As a brutal heat wave smothered parts of the Northeast in 100-plus degree heat, a police department in Massachusetts asked potential criminals to chill out. 

The Braintree Police Department asked potential wrongdoers to “hold off” on crime for the weekend. The department even offered alternatives to committing crimes, like binge-watching the Netflix show “Stranger Things” or just “blast” the air conditioning at home. 

The community of nearly 36,000 complied.

“One of the deputy chiefs was like, ‘There were no arrests over the weekend,'” Officer Peter Gillis, who is in BPD’s community outreach department, told USA TODAY. 

He added: “That’s unheard of for the summer. We typically do like seven or eight arrests over the weekend during the summer.” 

Gillis, a 13-year veteran of BPD who has managed the department’s Facebook page since 2008, said he likes to inject of bit of humor into the department’s posts in order to “humanize the badge.” 

He added he’s a “Stranger Things” fan. 

“In today’s era, I feel like how people connect with one another, it’s very heavily social media,” Gillis said. “How you talk to your family or your neighbors, it’s all social media. People report crimes on social media, they ask questions. Its really the only way we can reach out and talk to the community.

Heat wave ends in the East with a bang: Now it’s the West’s turn to bake.

“In the last 11 years, it’s even more important. If we need to reach out and touch our community, that’s what we have.”

The post asking Braintree residents for no crime was shared more than 132,000 times.

“Due to the extreme heat, we are asking anyone thinking of doing criminal activity to hold off until Monday,” the Friday Facebook post read. “It is straight up hot as soccer balls out there. Conducting criminal activity, in this extreme heat is next level henchmen status, and also very dangerous.”

Braintree is about a 20-minute drive from Boston, where the heat index was more than 100 degrees, according to the Boston Globe.

MLB: Big league ballparks broil as heat wave grips much of majors

Braintree police thanked the community for taking its request seriously in a Monday post.

“We thoroughly enjoyed everyone posting on Facebook about how hot it was, the triple digit temp reading from inside their car, selfies showing how hot they were and photos of frying eggs on your driveways,” the police department said on Monday.

“ZERO arrests this weekend. Big thank you to all our fans who commented, liked and shared our original post which gained the attention of nearly 12 million Facebookers.”

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Dancers from the 4 Star Dance Studio Jazmyn Cawley-Zayas, 9, left, and Kymora McKoy-Johnson, 6, right, both of Boston, spray one another while cooling down after dancing in the Roxbury Unity Parade, Sunday, July 21, 2019, in Boston’s Roxbury neighborhood. Temperatures during the parade reached the 90s. Steven Senne, APElla Geotz, 6, from West Haverstraw, New York, right, jumps into the poll as sister Camille, 7, left, prepares for the splash at Bowline Point Park in Haverstraw on Saturday, July 20, 2019. John Meore, The Journal NewsSara Miller, of Dundalk, Md., and her dog Max, a Belgian Malinois, walks in the water at the dog beach at Quiet Waters Park in Annapolis, Md., Saturday, July 20, 2019. The National Weather Service said “a dangerous heat wave” was expected to break record highs in some places, particularly for nighttime. Susan Walsh, APDestinee Lucas, 6, of Aliquippa, Pa., rides a wave at the pool at Settlers Cabin Park, Thursday, July 18, 2019, in Robinson, Pa. Communities nationwide are bracing for a record-breaking heatwave that’s already roasting much of the U.S. to continue through the weekend. Alexandra Wimley, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette via APMya Jones, left, 12, and her cousin Alexis Carlen, 13, keep cool on a tubes floating around the Endless River at Raging Rivers Waterpark in Grafton, Ill., on Wednesday, July 17, 2019. An excessive heat warning has been issued for St. Louis through Saturday night. David Carson, St. Louis Post-Dispatch via APJaxon Claymore, 8, left, and his older brother Jalen, 9, battle each other with large water guns in the hot mid-day sun in front of their apartment building on Wednesday, July 17, 2019, Bismarck, N.D. The pair say they compete against one another at home and in school to see who is the best in sports from running, throwing and strength. The weather forecast for the area calls for temperatures in the 80s with little chance of rain for the next several days. Mike McCleary, The Bismarck Tribune via AP

  • Alex Paladino cools off at the Eakins Oval fountain in Philadelphia on Sunday, July 21, 2019. The East Coast on Sunday sweated through another day of heat and humidity in a stretch of weather so oppressive that organizers in Boston cancelled a road race, Delaware Civil War re-enactors got the day off and the New York Police Department implored residents to take it easy. 1 of 63
  • A young spectator gets water doused on her by an adult during the seventh inning of a baseball game between the Baltimore Orioles and the Boston Red Sox, Sunday, July 21, 2019, in Baltimore. The Orioles won 5-0. The National Weather Service says the oppressive and dangerous heat wave will abate by Monday and Tuesday. The agency says a swath of the East Coast, from the Carolinas up to Maine, faces the greatest heat threat Sunday.2 of 63
  • Dancers from the 4 Star Dance Studio Jazmyn Cawley-Zayas, 9, left, and Kymora McKoy-Johnson, 6, right, both of Boston, spray one another while cooling down after dancing in the Roxbury Unity Parade, Sunday, July 21, 2019, in Boston's Roxbury neighborhood. Temperatures during the parade reached the 90s.3 of 63
  • A spectator shields itself from the sun with an umbrella during the second inning of a baseball game between the Baltimore Orioles and the Boston Red Sox, Sunday, July 21, 2019, in Baltimore. The National Weather Service says the oppressive and dangerous heat wave will abate by Monday and Tuesday. The agency says a swath of the East Coast, from the Carolinas up to Maine, faces the greatest heat threat Sunday. 4 of 63
  • Dock worker Damon Jones, of Malden, Mass., places bags of ice into the trunk of a customers car at Brookline Ice Co., Sunday, July 21, 2019, in Brookline, Mass. Temperatures in eastern Massachusetts reached the 90s Sunday. 5 of 63
  • People cool off on a hot afternoon in Flushing Meadows Park, in New York City, on July 21, 2019. The US is sweating through a weekend of extremely hot weather, with major cities including New York and Washington bracing for temperatures close to or exceeding 100 degrees Fahrenheit. Nearly 150 million people across the country are facing hazardous temperatures in a heatwave stretching from the Midwestern plains to the Atlantic coast, the National Weather Service said.6 of 63
  • A spectator drops water on his head while watching the fourth inning of a baseball game between the Baltimore Orioles and the Boston Red Sox in hot weather, Saturday, July 20, 2019, in Baltimore. Temperatures reached the high 90s in Baltimore with the real feel over the triple digit mark. 7 of 63
  • People cool off at a park in the Navy Yard neighborhood on July 20, 2019 in Washington, DC. An excessive heat warning remains in effect throughout the weekend according to the National Weather Service.8 of 63
  • A Capitol Hill police officer wipes sweat from his eyes as he stands his post on the West side of Capitol Hill in Washington, Saturday, July 20, 2019. The National Weather Service said a dangerous heat wave was expected to break record highs in some places, particularly for nighttime. 9 of 63
  • People enjoy the Astoria Pool on a hot afternoon in the borough of Queens, New York City, on July 20, 2019. The US is sweating through a weekend of extremely hot weather, with major cities including New York and Washington bracing for temperatures close to or exceeding 100 degrees Fahrenheit. Nearly 150 million people across the country are facing hazardous temperatures in a heatwave stretching from the Midwestern plains to the Atlantic coast, the National Weather Service said. 10 of 63
  • Children cool off in water fountains at Herbert Von King Park on July 20, 2019 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City.  Mayor Bill de Blasio declared a state of emergency in the city as the heat index could reach 115 degrees today.11 of 63
  • James Catin, 12, of Nyack, New York, sits under a water sprayer on the splash pad at Nyack's Memorial Park on Friday, July 19, 2019.12 of 63
  • Ella Geotz, 6, from West Haverstraw, New York, right, jumps into the poll as sister Camille, 7, left, prepares for the splash at Bowline Point Park in Haverstraw on Saturday, July 20, 2019. 13 of 63
  • People float on tubes on The River, under the spray of water jets, at Tibbetts Brook Park in Yonkers, New York on July 20, 2019.  The hottest weekend of the year so far, brought out thousands of people to the area parks and pools. 14 of 63
  • Sara Miller, of Dundalk, Md., and her dog Max, a Belgian Malinois, walks in the water at the dog beach at Quiet Waters Park in Annapolis, Md., Saturday, July 20, 2019. The National Weather Service said a dangerous heat wave was expected to break record highs in some places, particularly for nighttime.15 of 63
  • Piper plays at the dog beach at Quiet Waters Park in Annapolis, Md., Saturday, July 20, 2019. 16 of 63
  • As a rainbow forms, Malik Bey leads guides Moose, a English Bulldog puppy, through a spraying fire hydrant on July 20, 2019 in Philadelphia, PA.  With heat indexes reaching 105 to 115 degrees today and tomorrow, an excessive heating warning has been designated for this weekend in multiple regions of the U.S.17 of 63
  • People enjoy the day playing in a water fountain as the Empire State Building is seen from Williamsburg section of Brooklyn on Saturday, July 20, 2019 in New York.  Americans from Texas to Maine sweated out a steamy Saturday as a heat wave spurred cancelations of events from festivals to horse races and the nations biggest city ordered steps to save power to stave off potential problems. 18 of 63
  • The Washington Monument is silhouetted against the morning sky as the sun rises at the start of a hot day in Washington, Saturday July 20, 2019. Temperatures in the Nation's Capital are expected to reach the upper 90s. 19 of 63
  • Track security officer Patty Patterson carries a bag of ice on her shoulders as she walks back to her post during a NASCAR Cup Series auto race practice at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon, N.H., Saturday, July 20, 2019. Temperatures were forecasted to reach nearly 100 degrees at the track.20 of 63
  • People shade themselves from the sun as they walk in Central Park in New York, New York on July 20, 2019. A heat wave is affecting some 180 million people at the East Coast and the Midwest regions of the US, with temperatures averaging 98 degrees.  21 of 63
  • A woman sunbathes in the Sheep Meadow in Central Park in New York, New York on July 20, 2019.22 of 63
  • A rower wipes sweat from his face with his jersey during the Philadelphia Youth Regatta on July 20, 2019 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  With heat indexes reaching 105 to 115 degrees today and tomorrow, an excessive heating warning has been designated for this weekend in multiple regions of the U.S. 23 of 63
  • A poster is displayed outside a bar that is closed due to the heat on July 20, 2019 in Union Beach, New Jersey. An excessive heating warning designated for this weekend is affecting nearly two-thirds of the United States where more than 195 million people will experience temperatures above 90 degrees over the next few days. 24 of 63
  • The sun rises over New York City and the Empire State Building while a man sprays water at Pier A on Saturday, July 20, 2019 in Hoboken, N.J. Temperatures in the high 90s are forecast for Saturday and Sunday with a heat index well over 100. Much of the nation is also dealing with high heat. 25 of 63
  • Khloe Pachano, 8, wipes sweat from her face on July 19, 2019 near the Lincoln Memorial. Washington DC's heat index is forecast to surge past 100 degrees and approach the 110s on July 20, 2019. The heat index, also known as the apparent temperature, is what the temperature feels like to the human body when relative humidity is combined with the air temperature. 26 of 63
  • Children cool off in Crown Fountain in downtown as temperatures are forecast to head into the mid to high 90's with a heat index of around 115 degrees on July 19, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. The heat wave gripping the city is affecting nearly two-thirds of the United states where more than 195 million people will experience temperatures above 90 degrees over the next few days. 27 of 63
  • Pitchfork Music Festival attendees of the first day of the music festival braved record-setting temperatures in Chicago, Friday, July 19, 2019.28 of 63
  • Cooling off at Pitchfork Music Festival in Union Park, Chicago, Friday, July 19, 2019. 29 of 63
  • Children put their faces in a fountain at a water park during an excessive heat watch in Washington, DC. on July 19, 2019. An excessive heat watch has been issued for the weekend in Washington DC. Meanwhile, a dangerous heat wave will cause close to 200 million people in the US to experience temperatures at 90 degrees Fahrenheit or higher this weekend, 19-21 July. 30 of 63
  • People try and stay cool in a fountain in Manhattan during the start of heat wave across the U.S. on July 19, 2019 in New York City. Much of the East Coast is experiencing abnormally high temperatures with highs expected over 100 degrees by the weekend.  31 of 63
  • People cool themselves by jumping into Lake Michigan at Chicago's North Ave Beach on Friday, July 19, 2019. A heat wave hits the Chicago greater area and temperatures are expected to reach high 90s. 32 of 63
  • Baltimore Orioles outfielder Keon Broxton douses himself with water while taking a break between fielding and batting practice prior to a baseball game against the Boston Red Sox, Friday, July 19, 2019, in Baltimore. A heat wave is hitting Baltimore and heat advisories have been set ahead of a hot weekend. 33 of 63
  • People try and stay cool in the fountain in Washington Square Park during the start of heat wave across the U.S. on July 19, 2019 in New York City. Much of the East Coast is experiencing abnormally high temperatures with highs expected over 100 degrees by the weekend. 34 of 63
  • People rest in the shade at the Lincoln Memorial on the National Mall in Washington, DC, on July 19, 2019.  Some 100 heat records are expected to fall this weekend, according to the National Weather Service, as a heat wave hits the midwest and eastern US. 35 of 63
  • People play in a waterfall at Yards Park in Washington, DC, July 19, 2019, as an extreme heat wave hits the region. Some 100 heat records are expected to fall this weekend, according to the National Weather Service, as a heat wave hits the midwest and eastern US. 36 of 63
  • Children cool down at the Petworth Spray Park in Washington, DC, on July 19, 2019. 37 of 63
  • A visitor uses an umbrella outside the National Museum of African American History and Culture, with the Washington Monument seen behind; during an excessive heat watch in Washington, DC. on  July 19, 2019. An excessive heat watch has been issued for the weekend in Washington DC. Meanwhile, a dangerous heat wave will cause close to 200 million people in the US to experience temperatures at 90 degrees Fahrenheit or higher this weekend,July 19-21.38 of 63
  • Tourists cool off in a sprinkler on the National Mall, on July 19, 2019 in Washington, DC.  An excessive heat warning has been issued for the Washington area as temperatures approach triple digits possibly breaking existing heat records. 39 of 63
  • A construction worker stops to cool off in the water fountains at Canal Park, on July 19, 2019 in Washington, DC.40 of 63
  • A boy plays in a fountain to cool off as temperatures approach 100 degrees Fahrenheit Thursday, July 18, 2019, in Kansas City, Mo. 41 of 63
  • Destinee Lucas, 6, of Aliquippa, Pa., rides a wave at the pool at Settlers Cabin Park, Thursday, July 18, 2019, in Robinson, Pa. Communities nationwide are bracing for a record-breaking heatwave that's already roasting much of the U.S. to continue through the weekend. 42 of 63
  • Abby Swank, 10, of Robinson, leaps off a diving board at the pool at Settlers Cabin Park, Thursday, July 18, 2019, in Robinson, Pa. 43 of 63
  • Julissa Hernandez, left, and Kuna Malik Hamad stay cool while practicing their Brazilian dancing under a fountain on the Georgetown Waterfront in Washington, DC on July 18, 2019. An 'Excessive Heat Watch' has been issued for the Washington, DC area through July 21st by the National Weather Service, with heat index values of up to 110 Fahrenheit. 44 of 63
  • Children cool off in the fountains at the Fred Cook Memorial Splash Park in Longfellow Park, Thursday July 18, 2019 in Murphysboro, Ill. An excessive heat warning for the region continues through Sunday with the heat index around 105 each day. 45 of 63
  • A Galapagos tortoise cools off in a shower of water from a zookeeper at the Oklahoma City Zoo, Thursday, July 18, 2019, in Oklahoma City. The National Weather Service has issued excessive heat warnings from the Southern Plains to Nebraska and as far east to New York State and parts of the East Coast. =46 of 63
  • A roofer works on a new home under construction Thursday, July 18, 2019, in Houston. A heat wave is expected to send temperatures soaring close to 100 degrees through the weekend across much of the country. The National Weather Service estimates that more than 100 heat records will fall on Saturday. Most will not be the scorching daily highs, but for lack of cooling at night, something called nighttime lows. Those lows will be record highs. 47 of 63
  • Mya Jones, left, 12, and her cousin Alexis Carlen, 13, keep cool on a tubes floating around the Endless River at Raging Rivers Waterpark in Grafton, Ill., on Wednesday, July 17, 2019. An excessive heat warning has been issued for St. Louis through Saturday night.48 of 63
  • A truck drives east out of Alton, Ill., over the Clark Bridge as clouds from a severe warned thunderstorm roll in on Wednesday, July 17, 2019. The storm knocked out power to thousands of customers in St. Louis County and St. Charles County. St. Louis is under excessive heat warning until Saturday night.49 of 63
  • Jaxon Claymore, 8, left, and his older brother Jalen, 9, battle each other with large water guns in the hot mid-day sun in front of their apartment building on Wednesday, July 17, 2019, Bismarck, N.D. The pair say they compete against one another at home and in school to see who is the best in sports from running, throwing and strength. The weather forecast for the area calls for temperatures in the 80s with little chance of rain for the next several days. 50 of 63
  • Devin Johnson (right) and James Watson (far left) sell water to tourists on July 17, 2019 near the Washington Monument. Washington DC's heat index values are predicted to reach 105 to 110 Fahrenheit due to temperatures in the mid 90s on July 17, 2019.  The nation's capital faces the hottest weather so far this summer as a heat wave is poised to spread across much of the central and eastern US over the next several days.51 of 63
  • Julian Bortey prepares to hand out water bottles for staff working in the heat for the Apollo 11's moon landing anniversary ceremony on July 17, 2019 near the Washington Monument. It's magic, Bortey said about the wet towel on his head.52 of 63
  • A woman cools off in the fountain at Washington Square Park during a hot afternoon day on July 17, 2019 in New York City. Sweltering heat is moving into the New York City area, with temperatures expected to rise close to 100 degrees by this weekend. The large heat wave will affect close to two thirds of the United States, with the East Coast and Midwest seeing the worst conditions.53 of 63
  • Tyler Secor 10, leaps off the high dive at the Kingston Community Pool to cool off as the temperatures rise Wednesday afternoon, July 17, 2019, in Kingston, Pa. Secor and other campers at the Kingston Recreation plan on spending much of the day keeping cool in the pool.54 of 63
  • A girl runs through the splash pad in Coal St. Park in Wilkes-Barre, Pa. on Tuesday, July 16, 2019.55 of 63
  • Nevaeha, 8, plays in the fountain at Canal Park on July 17, 2019. Washington DC's heat index values are predicted to reach 105 to 110 Fahrenheit due to temperatures in the mid 90s on July 17, 2019.  The nation's capital faces the hottest weather so far this summer as a heat wave is poised to spread across much of the central and eastern US over the next several days. 56 of 63
  • Rose Scott-Wright plays with her dog Cloie on July 17, 2019 at Canal Park. 57 of 63
  • Cincinnati Reds first base coach Delino DeShields wipes his face in the dugout during the fourth inning of a baseball game against the Chicago Cubs in Chicago, Wednesday, July 17, 2019. Chicago and much of the surrounding area will be under an excessive heat watch starting Thursday, as temperatures climb into the 90s, coming close to 100 degrees Friday and Saturday, with dangerously high heat indices, the National Weather Service declared Wednesday. 58 of 63
  • Amber Lewis escapes the heat with her kids Claire, 7, and Cameron, 9, at the Joannes Aquatic Center Tuesday, July 16, 2019, in Green Bay, Wis. 59 of 63
  • Reba, an Asian Elephant, is sprayed down with a hose by elephant trainer Monica Uhl at the Phoenix Zoo, July 16, 2019. The Phoenix Zoo hosted a press tour to showcase how the staff keeps their animals cool during the hot summer season. 60 of 63
  • Kiara Schmidt and Maddy Schreiber, right, beat the heat while enjoying a snow cone from Sno-Biz on Tuesday, July 16, 2019, in Kimberly, Wis.61 of 63
  • Poblocki Paving employee Daniel Huaracha takes a moment Monday July 15, 2019 to wipe the sweat away while paving a parking lot in Brown Deer, Wis. The job was just one of many where employees working outside are doing what they can to deal with the high heat and humidity we are experiencing this week. 62 of 63
  • Russ Wilson splashes water on his face from a fountain in New York, Wednesday, July 17, 2019. The heat wave that has been roasting much of the U.S. in recent days is just getting warmed up, with temperatures expected to soar to dangerous levels through the weekend. 63 of 63

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