Shared police jurisdiction calms campus area

Elizabeth Gibson

Since Evanston City Council expanded University Police’s jurisdiction, there has been a “significant decrease” in the number of off-campus citations of students for noise, drinking and illicit urination, UP said.

“We can take action when we need to,” said Asst. Chief Daniel McAleer of UP.

UP and the Evanston Police Department work well together to maintain order near campus, McAleer said.

In fall 2003 UP jurisdiction was expanded to range from Green Bay Road to Lake Michigan and from Lake Street to the northern city limit. South of Emerson Street, the west boundary is Asbury Avenue.

Before the change, UP had no jurisdiction in the area between Sherman and Ridge avenues and Foster and Noyes streets. The expansion came as a result of residents’ complaints as well as requests from UP.

“It’s something that had to be done at the time,” McAleer said. “It’s certainly been helpful to the University Police and the university community as a whole.”

Communication senior Sam Thilo said recently he has seen only EPD busting parties, but he expects to see more UP bike patrols as the weather gets warmer.

“What usually happens is you will see EPD late at night, but around noise time you see UP,” Thilo said. “I think they’re doing a really good job this year, they’re really fair about breaking up parties.”

McAleer said UP hopes to cover its expanded jurisdiction better by hiring more officers. He said the department used to run two patrols on Friday and Saturday, but it is now down to one patrol.

UP currently employs 26 officers in Evanston with 21 either assigned to the street or working as detectives.

The department plans to hire three more officers to work on the Evanston Campus., McAleer said.

“The university helped us out by giving us a lot more resources and understanding that our roles have changed,” he said.

UP and EPD have a long history of working together, McAleer said, adding that the expanded jurisdiction has strengthened those ties.

During Winter Break the two departments worked together to deal with burglaries outside of campus.

“Evanston’s still the primary police (department) in the area,” McAleer said. “But we’re there to assist the Evanston Police Department. You have to give a lot of credit to the Evanston Police Department.”

McAleer also said UP has seen students working harder to get along with their neighbors.

Some students tell neighbors to call their cell phones before turning to the police, he said. In exchange neighbors are often willing to do favors such as watch a student’s house over the weekend.

Shortly after the UP’s jurisdiction grew, Samuel Inglese said his family was still being harassed by students.

But Inglese, who lives on the 2100 block of Ridge Avenue, said the students who live nearby haven’t caused them any problems recently.

“This year seems to be a whole different world,” Inglese said. “I don’t know if the students graduated, have gotten better, or some quieter kids have moved in.”