Friday, November 18, 2011

Campus Cops.

Campus police? We're surprised when the campus police are not quite the crack team of well-trained folks who might one day have their own procedural drama on TV?

I can only speak for my own campus police, and they are, without a doubt, the 9 dumbest dopes I've ever seen. Ill fitting unis. Giant flashlights. Food in their beards. That sort of thing.

All they seem to really care about is if my parking sticker is in the lower left of the back window. Well, I have an open Jeep, Starsky. I don't have a back window.

Looks like Penn State (don't type Peen State, please) might have a different problem with their force.

Flava below.


Penn State scandal turns spotlight on campus police
Justin Pope
Associated Press

At Penn State, as at many colleges, campus police occupy an unusual and much-misunderstood spot on the law enforcement spectrum – and when scandal breaks, that often leads to questions about divided loyalties.

The latest developments in the sex abuse case there have put university’s police front and center of some of the most prominent unanswered questions:

Did Penn State officers thoroughly and professionally investigate allegations that former assistant coach Jerry Sandusky sexually abused children on campus, only to have their findings quashed by prosecutors and image-conscious university administrators who preferred to handle things in-house?

Or were the police themselves part of a cover-up?


  1. When I was in grad school, my ATM card was stolen. (Well, I left it in the ATM, so it was technically my own damn fault.) The bank showed lots of purchases had been made using it as a debit card, and they remarked that it was unusual for a thief to buy so many things online, because that requires inputting one's address. But that's what my thief did--he or she bought magazine subscriptions and lots of round-trip train tickets and tried to buy a computer (when my money ran out). It was clear, from some of the purchases, that my card had been found and used by a student.

    Since the ATM was on campus, it was a matter for the campus police. I gave them all of the information. I told them that the bank even had the address of the person who stole the card. The bank wouldn't give me that information, but they said they'd gladly give it to the police. In other words, apprehending the thief was as simple as the campus police making a phone call.

    As far as I know, they never made the phone call. I contacted them multiple times to see if they'd called yet, and they never did. Then one of my friends told me about how he'd lost his ATM card on campus a few years previous, and the campus police repeatedly accused him of lying about it. He was almost arrested. Not wanting to suffer the same fate, I dropped it.

    Completely lost my faith in campus cops that day.

  2. Why would this be an investigation for campus police? Like Terry's, our campus "cops" are parking monitors. They don't even give speeding tickets or issue citations for running stop signs. I can't even imagine the campus police would do anything other than call in the real cops.

  3. At Big State U our campus cops have guns and can arrest people. They have to be committing a crime on campus for that arrest to happen, though, and this leads to problems in the prosecution of, say, sexual assault cases. What if the assault didn't 100% for sure occur on campus? What if it occurred in one of those little Switzerlands we call fraternity houses? Our campus police have a history of playing hot potato with sexual assault cases, passing them back and forth with the town cops as they try to figure out who, exactly, is responsible. You'd be amazed (or not) at the number of cases that get dropped in that process.

  4. Our head cop is an elderly overweight man who rides around in a golf cart giving parking tickets. Doesn't exactly scream "thin blue line" to me.

    I've meet a few other of the CCs and they've always been helpful and professional.

  5. At Main U, our campus cops are actually city cops assigned to the University. We even have a precinct on campus. I've never had a reason to interact with them, but I see them all the time, either in cars, on bikes or even on Segways. Main U is in the heart of the city, and we have had an increase in crime on campus in the past few years, so I guess that's why they're so present. At Secondary U, this week was the first time I've even seen any campus cops in four years.

  6. I never experianced the cops at my undergrad, which because it was Large State University were actually cops. They wrote a lot of tickets and ... well.. were quite useless apparently in Big Famous Crime You All Heard Of that happened when I was there. No direct experiance with them.

    At Second String State University the cops were re-uniformed state troopers and I had a lot of interaction with them because it was located in Famously Down and Out Dead North East Industrial City. They were much better than the university cops up the road (still cops, but not re-uniformed state troopers). Felt very safe there because both university cops and the city cops all took lunch and dinner breaks at the food places on campus. Nothing feels safer than going in for dinner at 9PM in Famously Down and Out Dead North East Industrial City than to see an an entire swat team having dinner.

    At my current institution it's public safety and not cops, and rather obvious is the difference I tell you. Most interested in scaring off people "who don't belong here".

  7. I find that campus cops range widely in quality, depending on how much real crime there is in the university's neighborhood. At Northwestern University, in safe, suburban, upper-middle-class Evanston, they were a joke. Not so at all at the urban University of Chicago: they were real police officers, much like the ones I saw at the University of Arizona. They were worse than a joke at rural, idyllic Dartmouth College: they were infamous for letting off wealthy undergraduates who'd committed real crimes, including drunken vandalism and, most infamously, sexual assaults.

    Penn State is rural and idyllic. What does this suggest about their campus po'?

  8. Over the past few weeks, my university system cops have been pepper-spraying students in the face at close range, bruising them with batons, and grabbing them by the hair to throw them on the ground. This in response to peaceful protests -- Occupy-style encampments. I am quite sure that this level of force would never be used if the encampments were a fraternity prank. And you know what? If I were the parents of students injured this way, I would sue the goddamned shit out of the university.

  9. Our campus cops like to sit at the bottom of the bug hill and give speeding tickets to the bicyclists who exceed 20 mph. They also can give bikers a DUI. Who knew?

  10. The line about "Starsky" is golden. Thanks!


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