During the summer, less crime occurred than during the school year.
“It slowed down a bit,” said Lieutenant Steve Hanson of the WSU Police Department. “But more students stayed around in Pullman (than in previous years.)”
There were a lot of leadership, football and basketball camps in addition to the Alive! orientation programs that brought more people to Pullman, but overall the volume of crimes was down from the school year, Hanson said.
In past years, there used to be more targeted break-ins at residence halls during university vacations, he said. However, in recent years the university has done more patrols to prevent these types of robberies.
The most common type of crime WSU police get called out for during the school year is theft, Hanson said. Students get up and leave their belongings at the Compton Union Building or the library, and when they get back, their things are gone.
Other common charges include MIPs and drug possession charges.
“We know alcohol plays a role in the more serious crimes,” he said.
The motivation in these types of charges is to stop people before worse crimes occur, he said. Many times, more serious crimes result from the consumption of alcohol and drugs.
“The majority of crimes are people making poor decisions and choices once they’ve had too much to drink,” Hanson said.
Though WSU police cannot patrol residence halls looking for crimes, he said, they can enter with a search warrant while investigating a crime.
“(Our goal) is to get to them and interfere before something worse happens,” he said.
In 2008, there were 175 arrests for MIPs, and in 2009 there were 188 arrests, he said.
Last weekend, ten people were charged with MIP, and two people were charged with DUI as a result of the statewide “Drive Hammered, Get Nailed Campaign” that the WSU police are participating in, he said.
The WSU Police Department’s jurisdiction extends to all university property including the core WSU campus, residence halls, all university-owned apartments and research facilities, he said. Greek row and College Hill, however, are in the Pullman Police Department’s jurisdiction.
Both Mom’s Weekend and Dad’s Weekend usually have higher crime activity, as well, Hanson said.
“Activity increases for both weekends due to the sheer number of folks,” he said. “We just want to make sure that when (parents) comes and have a good time with students, they do so responsibly.”