Why is the University interested in my conduct off-campus?
Students are representatives of the University. Whether you are on or off-campus, you are responsible for following the University at Albany’s student code of conduct. The University addresses off-campus conduct issues that adversely affect our community, the pursuit of the University’s mission and/or damage the institution’s reputation. In instances where off-campus activities violate a law (local, state or federal) and/or the code of conduct, the University will proceed with student conduct proceedings regardless of criminal charges. Community Rights and Responsibilities has full information about your responsibilities as a student at UAlbany.
How does the University get information about what happens off campus?
Every week the Albany Police Department emails a list of all arrested individuals as well as victimized individuals in the City of Albany to representatives from the area’s colleges. The UAlbany representatives are Thomas Gebhardt, the Director of Personal Safety & Off-Campus Affairs and Nancy Lauricella, Associate Director of the Office of Conflict Resolution and Civic Responsibility.
How can I have a legal and safe party off-campus?
If you choose to have a party, follow some tips on how to do it safely. Serving minors, charging admission, or creating loud noise is against the law. Large parties often get out of control and WILL draw the interest of the police. If people attending your party are intoxicated, it can lead to irresponsible, dangerous, or illegal action and you can be held responsible as the person who leases the apartment. Avoid this! Failure to observe even one of these directions can result in a criminal sanction and a conduct referral.
You answer a knock at your door and there is a police officer asking to come in and search your place. Can they do that? Is this legal?
In general, yes, the police can ask you for permission (i.e. your consent) to search your room, apartment or car. If you object to the search, you should politely say no. If the police feel strongly enough about the need to search the property they will have to see a judge to apply for a search warrant. With a warrant, they have the authority to search your apartment or car over your objections. If you deny consent, however, there are still some circumstances where the police can enter without a warrant. The police can enter if they suspect that a crime is underway. If you are being arrested in your house, police may lawfully seize any contraband or evidence of a crime that is in plain view and use it as evidence. They may do a “protective sweep” for weapons or accomplices to protect their safety or prevent the destruction of evidence. They may also enter your apartment if there is an emergency situation that could compromise public safety or lead to loss of evidence. The rules governing the conditions under which a police officer can enter and search your apartment are covered by the 4th Amendment of the US Constitution.
How are APD and UPD related?
The University Police Department (UPD) and the Albany Police Department (APD) are entirely separate police agencies. UPD has jurisdiction on campus property and the adjoining streets to campus. APD has jurisdiction in the City of Albany.
What should I expect when interacting with a University Police Officer (UPD)?
UPD is committed to community oriented law enforcement founded on the principals of respect, fairness and awareness of the diversity of our community. Officers are expected to be courteous and exercise their police authority only when necessary to maintain the safety of our community.
If I have a concern or complaint regarding the actions of a UPD officer, how should I bring it forward?
You may request to speak with a police supervisor or a member of the Command staff at any time. The request may be made through any UPD officer or by calling UPD Dispatch at 518 442-3131. The department “Compliment/Suggestion/Complaint” form can be filled out and submitted any time. All completed forms are formally reviewed and a notice of findings is provided to the person who filed the form.
What if I have a concern or complaint regarding the actions of an APD officer?
Complaints about Albany City Police can be made to the Citizen’s Police Review Board. Check out the site for more information. The forms are also available 24/7 in the UPD lobby on campus that is open 24/7.