Volume 92, Issue 8

Wednesday, September 16, 1998

wheeling and dealing


NEWS
 

Not too much crime yet...

By Sabrina Carinci
Gazette Staff

Western's men and women in blue are rejoicing about a safe and eventful Prientation week.

Despite the fact there weren't very many disturbances on campus this past week, students should still take various precautions during and after the time they go out with their friends, said Const. Wendy McGowan, community services officer for the University Police Department.

"There were definite undertones of a substantial amount of drinking," McGowan said. She added students both on and off campus have made more trips to hospital emergency rooms because of binge drinking this year.

Since the university is considered to be a public place, students caught consuming liquor on campus will be charged hefty fines. "There is a zero tolerance policy on campus," she said.

Rick Harriss, superintendent of the core unit for the London Police Department said he believes students should also remember the dangers of drinking to the level of intoxication including not only death by asphyxiation, but personal violations as well. "There was an incident last month involving the date rape pill – you should always know where your drink came from."

Those who hold keg parties are also expected to be aware of their responsibilities as hosts. When having guests over, students should realize that if caught they can face charges for violating noise, fire and liquor laws. "There is a minimum fine of $125 for anyone caught drinking underage," Harriss said. "The people throwing the party can be charged thousands of dollars in fines for breaking liquor laws."

Aside from drinking issues, the UPD stresses the importance of trying to limit the number of thefts which occur on campus. "Approximately 70 to 80 bikes are stolen from campus each year," McGowan said.

Students are encouraged to record the serial numbers of their bikes, computers and other valuables so that if they are stolen and later found, the items may be returned to their rightful owners. "Anything of value – from your bags at the Book Store to your coats at the library – really should be kept with you," McGowan said.

"We don't want to see students throwing the whole school year away," McGowan said. She added the UPD is available to all students and present to serve the community as a whole. "We're here for guidance, not just enforcement but we do expect equal contribution from all members of this community."


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Copyright The Gazette 1998