Frat party bust ends in MIC citations
Johnathan BanksStaff Writer
Anwesha BhattacharjeeWeb Editor
Linda NguyenStaff Writer
Nicole BrownStaff Designer
POSTEDSeptember 22, 2014
Updated Sept. 21:
Richardson PD cited at least 53 students for minor in consumption of alcohol at a Sigma Alpha Epsilon house party on Sept. 7.
As a result, the UTD chapter of SAE has been ordered to cease and desist by the national organization, according to Daniel Hernandez, assistant director of Fraternity and Sorority Life. The chapter and its members are suspended until the organization’s investigation is complete.
Four officers were dispatched to the house located at the intersection of Plano and Renner Roads shortly after midnight to investigate a report of a large party with alcohol and minors present, according to Richardson PD’s crime report.
As they approached the house, one officer noticed several empty beer bottles, plastic cups in the front yard and a loud noise coming from within, the report stated.
Another officer went around to the back and found people trying to climb out of one of the windows and others attempting to flee through a garage.
Officers detained all the individuals and determined them to be under the age of 21. The officers then took the detainees back inside the house.
Most attendees were handed off to a parent or guardian. Only one student had to be taken to the hospital for treatment after he was found to be highly intoxicated.
Although SAE President Andrew Daley confirmed attending the party, he declined to comment on whether it was an official SAE event or if he had been involved with the planning.
No university funds were used for the party, Hernandez said.
Computer science freshman, Keishi Mii, witnessed the aftermath of the bust.
“There were some kids talking to officers and others waiting for someone to pick them up out on the front lawn,” Mii said. “Overall, it was just a ton of police and other cars parked along the street.”
Occasionally, Richardson, Plano and Dallas PDs will inform UTDPD about incidents involving UTD students, Hernandez said.
Dean of Students Gene Fitch asked UTDPD to obtain a copy of the report with the names of the UTD students involved, said Chief of Police Larry Zacharias.
UTDPD’s involvement ended there, and any further investigation is the responsibility of the Dean of Students Office, Zacharias said.
Most disciplinary cases go to the Dean of Students Office, which handles cases of academic integrity and misconduct.
When a student receives an MIC for the first time, the Dean of Students Office gives him or her a written reprimand and a developmental probation, which includes an alcohol and other drug education, counseling and community service, as stated in the Student Discipline and Conduct policy.
If a second offense is reported, the student is put on disciplinary probation, during which any additional violations of the student code of conduct can lead to suspension, expulsion and even removal of the organization. The student can also be prohibited from participating in extracurricular activities, living on campus and working on campus, at the discretion of the Dean of Students.
The Dean of Students Office can receive the referral from the police, a student, a specific department or even an anonymous tip. The office then conducts its investigation, meets with the students to determine if they violated the code of conduct and then gives sanctions accordingly.
“We don’t go actively looking for stories in the newspaper or ask Richardson PD about anything, but if a story is referred to us we do an investigation,” Winkler said. “Off-campus choices can be handled on campus, and that is stated in the code of conduct as a possibility.”
Students can appeal sanctions and go to the Discipline Committee for hearings, which comprise faculty and students chosen to hear the case with witnesses to support each side’s case.
Students can also appeal decisions from the Discipline Committee or the Dean of Students and have the case handled by President David Daniel. From there, Daniel can decide whether to dismiss the case completely, lighten or harshen punishment.
According to the student code of conduct, punishments for on- or off-campus actions can span from verbal warnings to expulsions and denial of degree.
Scholarship loss based upon misconduct is not up to the Dean of Students Office but is at the discretion of the scholarship office.
Correction: An earlier version of the story incorrectly identified Plano Road.
Several UTD students were handed minor in consumption charges at a Sigma Alpha Epsilon party Saturday, Sept. 6.
Fifty-nine people who attended the party received MICs, according to Richardson PD officer Kevin Perlich.
A little after midnight, Richardson police arrested a minor carrying alcohol into the party and cited him for a minor in possession. This gave the officers reasonable cause to enter the home.
Upon entering, they immediately separated the crowd by age.
Those 21 and over with proper identification could leave without penalty, while underage attendees were lined up and breathalyzed. Anyone who blew over a 0.08, the legal limit for driving a vehicle, was issued an MIC.
No university funds were used for the party, said Daniel Hernandez, assistant director for Greek Life. The party was hosted at an off-campus house at the intersection of Plano Road and Renner Road.