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Geneseo update: 13WHAM News and Democrat

July 23, 2009

State officials investigating SUNY Geneseo police department

Bennett J. Loudon
Staff writer

State officials are investigating the campus police department at the State
University College at Geneseo.

Stephen DelGiacco, a spokesman for the state Inspector General¹s office,
declined to comment, but Geneseo Village Police Chief Eric Osganian said
investigators for the agency interviewed him in the spring.

And James McCartney, president of the New York State University Police
Officers Union, which represents the officers on the campus, said
investigators were at the campus police office on Tuesday and Wednesday
seeking records.

Osganian and McCartney said the investigation relates to how the campus
police handle cases of students who have abused drugs and alcohol.

McCartney alleges that campus police do not notify Geneseo Village Police
when they have information that crimes may have occurred in the village
because a student on campus may have illegally consumed alcohol off campus.

Osganian and McCartney said the investigation also is looking into how the
college reports crime statistics to the federal Education Department, as
required by law.

College officials did not immediately return a telephone call seeking
comment.

State Looking into SUNY Geneseo Underage Drinking Enforcement

Investigation at SUNY Geneseo

(Geneseo, N.Y.) – The state is looking into how underage drinking incidents are reported on campus at SUNY Geneseo.

The Geneseo Village Police Chief confirmed that representatives from the state inspector general’s office have interviewed him about how the campus police handle cases of underage students using drugs or alcohol.

College leaders said the office asked them for law enforcement records dealing with drugs and alcohol.

The investigation comes after sophomore Arman Partamian, 19, was found dead in an off-campus unsanctioned fraternity in March. His blood alcohol level was .55, nearly seven times the legal limit for driving.

A few weeks later, another fraternity, Phi Sigma Xi, was been charged with hazing, criminal nuisance, and unlawfully dealing with a child.

Mary Cooke and her family live next to that fraternity. They’ve have made numerous complaints to police about out-of-control behaviors. She welcomes the state investigation

“I think it’s wonderful and I hope that they get to the bottom of it,” she said.

The college indicated it is cooperating.

Calls to the inspector general’s office to confirm whether there is an actual investigation underway were not returned.

Sources tell 13WHAM News that the focus of such an investigation would likely look at how the college reports such statistics to the NYS Education Department.

By Hank Nuwer

Hank Nuwer is the Indiana-based author of Broken Pledges: The Deadly Rite of Hazing, High School Hazing, Wrongs of Passage and The Hazing Reader. He has written articles or columns on hazing for the Sunday Times of India, Toronto Globe & Mail, Harper's Magazine, Orlando Sentinel, The Chronicle of Higher Education and the New York Times Sunday Magazine. His new book is Hazing: Destroying Young Lives from Indiana University Press.

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