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Author Topic: Are Campus Police Accountable?  (Read 27649 times)
patric
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« on: June 23, 2007, 01:36:01 pm »

Tulsa public Schools are considering the creation of their own police force, initially funded by $2 million in federal money.
http://www.tulsaworld.com/news/article.aspx?articleID=070615_238_A1_Themi73431

But there are questions about a publicly-funded private police force, and how transparent their operation might be.

The University of Oklahoma received widespread criticism from both government watchdogs and conspiracy theorists following the alleged cover-up of a botched attempt to bomb a football stadium packed with 84,000 fans on October 1, 2005.  After failing to obtain quantities of Ammonium Nitrate, 21 year-old Joel Henry Hinrichs III settled on a TATP bomb and shrapnel, but was reportedly stopped at a stadium gate when he refused to allow his backpack to be searched.    

In a break from normal investigative procedure, the bench on which Hinrichs was killed was immediately removed and the area hosed down by campus police, and the incident was attributed to an "individual suicide".

More recently, this article about campus police concealing the rape and murder of a student, from the Whirled:


" YPSILANTI, Mich. -- For two months after Laura Dickinson was found dead in her dorm room, Eastern Michigan University officials assured her parents and the public there was no sign of foul play.
But campus police knew otherwise all along.
It wasn't until a fellow classmate was arrested in February that the truth came out: Dickinson had been raped and murdered. She had been found spread-eagle on the floor, naked from the waist down, a pillow covering her face and semen on her leg.
Now university officials from the president on down are being accused of endangering students to protect the school's image. "

http://www.tulsaworld.com/news/article.aspx?articleID=070623_1_C18_hUniv31243

Unlike the OU Bombing, EMU's faculty council voted to call for the firing of the university's president, saying the "cover-up was typical of the administration"  

Which leads us to the question: once a TPS Police Force is running independent of the normal checks and balances of municipal police departments, how accountable to the public will they be required to be, or will they, like OU, promptly flush their embarrassments down the drain with a fire hose?  

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sgrizzle
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« Reply #1 on: June 23, 2007, 03:49:49 pm »

There was a story about people doing this in texas. They can hire officers and get equipment of the same quality as TPD but for less cost since there is no middle man. You can own a drug sniffing dog for a fraction of what it costs to rent one.

In texas they made a several-fold reduction in crime by having their own district PD and a lot of well-monitored security cameras and patrols.

Hosing down and hauling off bloody, body-part covered materials from the middle of a public event seems like someone just trying to keep from inciting a riot, not covering up some great conspiracy.
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« Reply #2 on: June 23, 2007, 10:54:11 pm »

It's no diffrent then the Catholic church covering up the rapes of young boys...If a crime has been committed you call the proper authorities......Or face criminal charges yourself......They need to seperate the line of campus security and actual Police and or investgative authorities.....
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« Reply #3 on: June 24, 2007, 01:59:18 pm »

quote:
Originally posted by Breadburner

It's no diffrent then the Catholic church covering up the rapes of young boys...If a crime has been committed you call the proper authorities......Or face criminal charges yourself......They need to seperate the line of campus security and actual Police and or investgative authorities.....



I do agree here. With traffic and security, campus police should handle it. All major crimes should still be referred to TPD.
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cannon_fodder
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« Reply #4 on: June 26, 2007, 06:17:38 am »

On my campus for both Undergraduate (state school) and Graduate school (U Tulsa) the campus cops had the same power as a law enforcement officer.  At University of Northern Iowa the vast majority were retired cops OR waiting for jobs on a force after finishing a police training course at the community college.  They had everything from legal studies course to CLEET.  

In public high schools, the liaison officer was a mix between cop and 'best friend.'  The idea was to disuade kids from even bothering to do illegal stuff on campus.  In my hometown, it worked real well for a while - until the kids became accustomed to their presence.  Even then, it worked better than nothing.
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Johnboy976
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« Reply #5 on: June 26, 2007, 11:18:35 am »

I am a grad of Furman University. The cops there were designated as actual law enforcement officers (one was a retired FBI agent, and two were part-time county police officers). How they were able to make this possible was because Furman acted as a separate part of Greenville, SC. Campus police were a part of the county and city police force (although they were paid by the school). It was a weird setup, but if you assaulted one of them, you were charged with assaulting a police officer, and quickly taken to the county jail. It was one of the safest campuses I've ever lived on.
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patric
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« Reply #6 on: October 29, 2007, 06:32:39 pm »

An interesting video of campus police making up the rules as they go along:

http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=f5c_1193345495


Reporter Arrested While Covering Story

MIAMI -- A Local 10 reporter was arrested at Miami Central Senior High School while he was on assignment covering a story about school violence.
On Tuesday, Miami-Dade Schools Police told WPLG-TV's Jeff Weinsier he was trespassing and that he needed to leave.

He was not inside the school or inside the fenced-in area that surrounds the school. School board police told him to leave and go across the street from the school, but Weinsier said he was on a public sidewalk.

Police said they were giving him a lawful order to get off the property and that he was within 500 feet of a school.
Weinsier on videotape tries to convince officers that he had the right to be on the sidewalk and pointed out that other people were on the sidewalk, but after repeated attempts, police handcuffed him.

"If they are in a place that other people are -- public or anything -- and you focus only on a reporter and you tell them they need to leave, that would violate the constitution," said Mitrani.
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Breadburner
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« Reply #7 on: October 29, 2007, 06:56:23 pm »

He should call the real police and file a report...They broke the law....But I would like to hear the other half of the story...
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patric
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« Reply #8 on: November 01, 2007, 12:55:38 pm »

quote:
Originally posted by Breadburner

He should call the real police and file a report...They broke the law....But I would like to hear the other half of the story...


The nice thing about raw video is that, unless it's been tampered with, it pretty much tells what happened.
I dont know if Florida law gives any recourse to anyone falsely imprisoned by pseudo-cops, as they seem to have all the authority without the responsibility of their sworn counterparts.
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"Tulsa will lay off police and firemen before we will cut back on unnecessarily wasteful streetlights."  -- March 18, 2009 TulsaNow Forum
spoonbill
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« Reply #9 on: November 01, 2007, 01:16:13 pm »

quote:
Originally posted by patric

quote:
Originally posted by Breadburner

He should call the real police and file a report...They broke the law....But I would like to hear the other half of the story...


The nice thing about raw video is that, unless it's been tampered with, it pretty much tells what happened.
I dont know if Florida law gives any recourse to anyone falsely imprisoned by pseudo-cops, as they seem to have all the authority without the responsibility of their sworn counterparts.



Just look at the Jenks Campus Police.  They look just like TPD except they have nicer cars, better equipment shinier guns, and are, most likley, paid more.

http://www.tulsaworld.com/news/article.aspx?articleID=070905_9_ZS4_hJenk04101

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TUalum0982
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« Reply #10 on: November 01, 2007, 07:35:11 pm »

quote:
Originally posted by spoonbill

quote:
Originally posted by patric

quote:
Originally posted by Breadburner

He should call the real police and file a report...They broke the law....But I would like to hear the other half of the story...


The nice thing about raw video is that, unless it's been tampered with, it pretty much tells what happened.
I dont know if Florida law gives any recourse to anyone falsely imprisoned by pseudo-cops, as they seem to have all the authority without the responsibility of their sworn counterparts.



Just look at the Jenks Campus Police.  They look just like TPD except they have nicer cars, better equipment shinier guns, and are, most likley, paid more.

http://www.tulsaworld.com/news/article.aspx?articleID=070905_9_ZS4_hJenk04101






I can assure you Jenks Campus Police arent paid as well as TPD.  TPD starts at 42,500 per yr with 100 dollar a month bonus for having a college degree.  Since they require a 4yr college degree, thats an extra 1200 per yr.  I graduated from Jenks in 2001, they were driving older model crown vics and chevy caprices.  I last saw the chevy caprice about 8 months ago.  TPD has all new crown vics, chargers, mauraders, impalas, and magnums.  

TPD's academy is 24 weeks (if I remember correctly) with another 16 weeks working as a FTO (field training officer) with another officer.  I can assure you TPD's training is more difficult, skilled, and effective then that of Jenks Campus Police 2 days at the range.  Plus I believe the only requirement for Jenks Campus Police is to be CLEET CERTIFIED, with a decent background.  I would be willing to bet that half of the Jenks Campus Police would not pass the background check that TPD requires and the questions that are asked of them in front of the top brass.

I dont know where you got that info that Jenks Campus Police have better cars, pay and equipment, or if thats just your own personal opinion but I would have to disagree with you.

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spoonbill
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« Reply #11 on: November 02, 2007, 05:29:16 am »

quote:
Originally posted by TUalum0982

quote:
Originally posted by spoonbill

quote:
Originally posted by patric

quote:
Originally posted by Breadburner

He should call the real police and file a report...They broke the law....But I would like to hear the other half of the story...


The nice thing about raw video is that, unless it's been tampered with, it pretty much tells what happened.
I dont know if Florida law gives any recourse to anyone falsely imprisoned by pseudo-cops, as they seem to have all the authority without the responsibility of their sworn counterparts.



Just look at the Jenks Campus Police.  They look just like TPD except they have nicer cars, better equipment shinier guns, and are, most likley, paid more.

http://www.tulsaworld.com/news/article.aspx?articleID=070905_9_ZS4_hJenk04101






I can assure you Jenks Campus Police arent paid as well as TPD.  TPD starts at 42,500 per yr with 100 dollar a month bonus for having a college degree.  Since they require a 4yr college degree, thats an extra 1200 per yr.  I graduated from Jenks in 2001, they were driving older model crown vics and chevy caprices.  I last saw the chevy caprice about 8 months ago.  TPD has all new crown vics, chargers, mauraders, impalas, and magnums.  

TPD's academy is 24 weeks (if I remember correctly) with another 16 weeks working as a FTO (field training officer) with another officer.  I can assure you TPD's training is more difficult, skilled, and effective then that of Jenks Campus Police 2 days at the range.  Plus I believe the only requirement for Jenks Campus Police is to be CLEET CERTIFIED, with a decent background.  I would be willing to bet that half of the Jenks Campus Police would not pass the background check that TPD requires and the questions that are asked of them in front of the top brass.

I dont know where you got that info that Jenks Campus Police have better cars, pay and equipment, or if thats just your own personal opinion but I would have to disagree with you.





One of them lives in my neighborhood.  He drives a new Doge Jenks Police car.  Has a dash mounted computer.  He patrols the East and SE campuses.  He told me once that they have to patrol the River Walk too.  I'm not sure what he gets paid, but he lives in a 250k+ house and his wife is a stay at home mom.  He used to be a Highway Patrol.

I will ask him about the job next time we take a walk.
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TUalum0982
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« Reply #12 on: November 02, 2007, 07:09:29 pm »

quote:
Originally posted by spoonbill

quote:
Originally posted by TUalum0982

quote:
Originally posted by spoonbill

quote:
Originally posted by patric

quote:
Originally posted by Breadburner

He should call the real police and file a report...They broke the law....But I would like to hear the other half of the story...


The nice thing about raw video is that, unless it's been tampered with, it pretty much tells what happened.
I dont know if Florida law gives any recourse to anyone falsely imprisoned by pseudo-cops, as they seem to have all the authority without the responsibility of their sworn counterparts.



Just look at the Jenks Campus Police.  They look just like TPD except they have nicer cars, better equipment shinier guns, and are, most likley, paid more.

http://www.tulsaworld.com/news/article.aspx?articleID=070905_9_ZS4_hJenk04101






I can assure you Jenks Campus Police arent paid as well as TPD.  TPD starts at 42,500 per yr with 100 dollar a month bonus for having a college degree.  Since they require a 4yr college degree, thats an extra 1200 per yr.  I graduated from Jenks in 2001, they were driving older model crown vics and chevy caprices.  I last saw the chevy caprice about 8 months ago.  TPD has all new crown vics, chargers, mauraders, impalas, and magnums.  

TPD's academy is 24 weeks (if I remember correctly) with another 16 weeks working as a FTO (field training officer) with another officer.  I can assure you TPD's training is more difficult, skilled, and effective then that of Jenks Campus Police 2 days at the range.  Plus I believe the only requirement for Jenks Campus Police is to be CLEET CERTIFIED, with a decent background.  I would be willing to bet that half of the Jenks Campus Police would not pass the background check that TPD requires and the questions that are asked of them in front of the top brass.

I dont know where you got that info that Jenks Campus Police have better cars, pay and equipment, or if thats just your own personal opinion but I would have to disagree with you.





One of them lives in my neighborhood.  He drives a new Doge Jenks Police car.  Has a dash mounted computer.  He patrols the East and SE campuses.  He told me once that they have to patrol the River Walk too.  I'm not sure what he gets paid, but he lives in a 250k+ house and his wife is a stay at home mom.  He used to be a Highway Patrol.

I will ask him about the job next time we take a walk.



Thats why he lives in a 250K house, because he is a retired trooper.  They have a pretty lucrative retirement plan.  As for TPD, checkout their website (www.tulsapolice.org) and click on JOIN TPD.  Their pay isnt exactly minimum wage.  Each TPD patrol car has a new computer, not to mention all the new motorcycles they purchased, and the new radar/laser equipment that can pick out the fastest car out of 3 lanes of traffic (for instance on 169).

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patric
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« Reply #13 on: November 29, 2007, 03:03:44 pm »

Crime & Punishment: Yale's New Secret Society
Yale University Police Department wants all the power of a regular police force, but none of the accountability.

http://www.newhavenadvocate.com/article.cfm?aid=4486

If it looks like a cop, shoots like a cop and arrests like a cop, is it a cop?

Apparently not if it’s a Yale cop.

The Yale University Police Department exists under a patchwork of state and city laws and university policy, and acts like a normal police force most of the time. They have arrest powers anywhere in the city (and anywhere in the state for felony crimes). They carry weapons. They drive squad cars. They use the New Haven Police Department to book suspects, process records and evidence, and detain and transport prisoners. They even wear NHPD badges.

But when it comes to investigating its own, Yale P.D.’s a private entity. So says Yale’s police chief, who is fighting the release of personnel files of two Yale cops suspected of mishandling the arrest of a city teenager near Yale last spring: Officers Brian T. Donnelly and Chris Cofrancesco.

The 16-year-old African American boy was arrested on a breach of peace charge for allegedly riding his bike on the sidewalk on May 23. When questions arose about how the officers treated the kid during questioning, Public Defender Janet Perrotti asked Yale P.D. for access to the arresting officers’ personnel files.

Yale P.D. refused on the premise that it’s a private entity, not subject to state open records laws. Perrotti believes otherwise, and filed a Freedom of Information complaint for the records that will likely serve as a test case for whether Yale P.D. can shield itself from public scrutiny.

Perrotti, whose husband, ironically, is the first cousin of Yale Police Chief James Perrotti, argues that Yale cops perform a “government function,” which is one threshold under case law for determining whether an entity falls under FOIA. The law lays out four benchmarks for gauging whether an agency’s considered “public:” 1) The entity performs a governmental function. 2) The level of government funding it gets. 3) The extent of government involvement or regulation over the agency. And 4) whether the entity was created by the government.

The public defender reasons Yale P.D. clearly performs a government function: They patrol downtown New Haven in police cruisers, investigate crimes and carry guns. Yale receives millions in federal and state funding, the complaint says, and get what amounts to city subsidies in the form of tax exemptions on its headquarters (appraised at $5.6 million) and squad cars.

As noted previously, Yale police collaborate with city police. And the first Yale officers, back in 1894, were New Haven cops on loan from the city, which maintained powers to appoint Yale cops for years afterward. So Yale P.D. would appear to meet all four of the benchmarks, Janet Perrotti says.

“YUPD should not become one of Yale University’s secret societies,” she writes in her FOIA brief.

Yale’s lawyer, Robert M. Langer of Wiggin & Dana, admits that, yes, Yale P.D. functions much as regular police do, but that an agreement with the city revised in 1992 actually stripped the city of whatever oversight powers it may have had. Yale cops, for instance, no longer have to train at the same academy New Haven cops do; any municipal training program is sufficient. The revised agreement also “omits any reference to YPD abiding by rules and regulations of the City of New Haven Department of Police Services.”

As to government funding, Yale says what it gets in public money is negligible: $19,957 in federal grants between 2000 and 2004. Yale says the FOIA complaint fails on all four benchmarks. Yale spokesman Tom Conroy would not discuss the case, on which a ruling is expected any day now.

The circumstances surrounding the actual arrest are unknown—because of the kid’s age, his case file is off limits. The context is not: Last year, at the height of fear over kids on bikes perpetrating random violent crimes, Chief Perrotti sent a campus-wide email urging people to call Yale police if they saw packs of kids on bikes riding through campus. Maybe someone took him up on it.
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Paul
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« Reply #14 on: December 09, 2007, 03:59:17 pm »

Wow!  I'm almost speechless at the innacuracies posted in this thread.  Almost.  I'd like to address some of the statements and mistatements made here.

First, Campus Police are trained to the same standards as all other police officers in the state of Oklahoma.  While its true that the Tulsa Police Department far exceeds the amount of initial training required for officers by the state, most departments in this state do not.  So, a Jenks Campus Police Officer does not have the same level of required initial training as an officer from TPD, but he has the exact same training as members of just about every other department in the state.  

Next, Campus Police are police, plain and simple.  We don't get to decide who is and who is not a cop, just because we like them or don't.  The laws of the State of Oklahoma are quite clear.  Campus Police differ from other police in only one respect:  jurisdiction.  Campus Police enforce laws only on the property owned, operated, or under the control of their employing agency.  The same restrictions apply to ALL police officers.  A Sand Springs officer, for example, cannot simply decide to patrol the streets of Tulsa and make arrests there.  He does not have the authority to do that.  All officers are bound by the same restrictions.  A special note here, if a Campus Police officer, or one from Sand Springs for that matter, sees a violation occur within his jurisdiction, he may chase the suspect to kingdom come, if neccessary, to take him into custody, regardless of whose jurisdiction the suspect is in when captured.  Sorry, you can't just step off the campus and yell "safe at home" and expect the chase to end with an "aw shucks".  

As far as pay goes, Tulsa Police officers start with a base salary of $33,711 per year.  That's it, no ifs ands or buts.  They may get a $1200 per year bonus for education, I don't know.  Even so, that makes the pay $34,911.  Even factoring in the clothing allowance, which is very strictly monitored and only used for department uniforms and equipment, brings the total starting salary to $35,536.  That's a far cry from the $42,000 or so one writer mentioned.  And yes, a 4 year degree is required for that department.  That's not much given the requirements.  Jenks Campus Police start at about $12 per hour or so.  With overtime and fairly regular pay raises, I doubt anyone in the department earns less than $40,000 per year.  And like almost all other Oklahoma police departments, Jenks Campus Police do not require a 4 year degree as does the TPD.  

Tulsa has to budget for over 700 officers, their equipment and uniforms, and an awful lot of infrastructure that goes with running a department of that size.  Its expensive, so some of the officers only get a new car every 4 or 5 years, with reserve officers using some pretty outdated equipment.  That's understandable.  The Jenks Campus Police now has 3 new Impalas and a new Tahoe, while retaining two old Crown Victoria Interceptors to round out the fleet.  Those will be replaced in fairly short order, as meager funds allow.  True, the equipment used by the campus officers has improved quite a bit in recent years, as has the quality and motivation of the officers.  I personally feel this is tied to the hiring of a new chief in 2004.  

Which reminds me, the Chief is a 28 year veteran of the Tulsa Police Department, where he served as an investigator, a traffic officer, and a supervisor.  In fact, he was the lead investigator in TPD's background investigations unit.  I highly doubt that campus police officers would fail to meet the background standards of the TPD, which were at least in part, formed by the new chief himself.  

Experience, you ask?  Well, two of our officers come from the Tulsa Police Reserve with years of service to that organization.  They are intimately familiar with the inner workings of the TPD, and passed the rigorous background checks and training required there.  They both have years of experience with other local agencies as full time officers.  Another officer has 12 years of experience from a major metropolitan police department in another state.  Another has 5 years experience in one of the largest metropolitan areas in our country, and has an associates degree in police science, and years of leadership experience in the U.S. military.  The Assistant Chief has worked for about 15 years for the Jenks Campus Police.  I believe he has a pretty firm grasp on the job at this point.  That's six full time officers.  They also have 4 or 5 reserve officers, all with extensive experience from other agencies in the area.

Also, I'd like to touch on accountability.  Other agencies, like the TPD, have to abide by the laws of the state, and by policies and procedures of their department and the municipalities or counties which employ them.  They also undergo public scrutiny and must answer to court rulings and orders.  The campus police officer must also labor under all those laws, rules, policies, procedures, supervisors, courts and public scrutiny.  Campus police also have to answer to the School Board, the Superintendant, and the parents and families of the 10,000 or so students attending school in Jenks.  In short, campus police officers are accountable to all the same folks as other officers, and then some.  

Campus Police have the same authority to arrest, and the same responsibility to the public as any other police officer in any other agency.  And yes, for the record, the job is different from any other agency out there.  Police in Skiatook have a much different job from those in Tulsa, Broken Arrow, or Jenks.  Every agency has its own focus, its own issues, its own personalities.  Jenks Campus Police are different from Tulsa Police in about the same way as any agency is different from any other.  They have a focus on safety and security first, the uninterrupted continuation of the education process second, and law enforcement third.  And rest assured, when an officer of the Jenks Campus Police department says, "you're under arrest", the day will end with you in the same jail you'd be in if a TPD officer said the same thing to you.  

Now, that's accurate information you can take to the bank....
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