ASU’s Tempe Campus was grossly understaffed the night a brutal sex assault occurred

On 09/09/14, a student was  attacked and sexually assaulted near Adelphi II Commons. This has been especially shocking to the ASU community and general public due to the brutal violence involved, and also because it is relatively uncommon to be sexually assaulted by a person unknown to the victim (The Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network states that in approximately 2/3 of sexual assaults, the offender is someone known to the victim)

After a slew of sex assaults last fall, ASU gave the impression to the community it was proactively and aggressively dealing with the situation, by participating in a “Start by Believing” campaign last spring aimed at sex assault prevention.

In an editorial last spring entitled “‘Start by Believing’ ASUPD is part of the problem!” we questioned ASU’s true commitment to handling the sex assault problem on campus; we felt the department did not have the staffing nor the resources to adequately and proactively respond to and deter sexual assaults and other major crimes. Unfortunately, the vicious sexual assault on 09/09/14 supports this hypothesis.

On 09/09/14, Tempe campus had a mere 4 officers working on patrol, and two of those units were working OT for shift coverage. The total population of ASU is now 82,000, with the majority of students living on ASU’s Tempe campus. With 4 officers for roughly 82,000 students, that means there is 1 officer per every 20,500 students. Even Chicago, a city with some of the highest crime rates in the country, has a higher officer to citizen ratio: 44.2 officers for every 10,000 citizens.

On the night of this sexual assault, ASUPD had 7 officers dived amongst 4 campuses, which means there is 1 officer for 11,714 students (which doesn’t include the numbers of staff, faculty, and the general public who come to ASU on a regular basis). Simply put, the negligent management of public safety by ASU President Michael Crow is unacceptable.

How many more sexual assaults will happen before Michael Crow and ASU’s administration will give its officers the staffing and resources they desperately need to effectively do their jobs?

Arizona State University is a rape friendly campus

 It’s a good thing everyone showed up for overtime! The lack of coverage only encourages more criminal activity.

The lack of leadership only encourages more officers to leave the department as soon as possible.

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16 thoughts on “ASU’s Tempe Campus was grossly understaffed the night a brutal sex assault occurred

  1. njosnavelin says:

    Waiting for the bitchy email reaponse from Salcido that will follow this post, no doubt.

    Low staffing numbers like this just validates the claim that ASUPD is flaming shit pile, and a DIRECT RESULT of shitty people like “the clique”. Why are these people still employed at asu? THEY created the staffing problem.

    • popo39machine says:

      I think he realizes he’s an asshole and nobody cares what he has to say. If he cared about public safety he would have taken some action to support the troops who ensure it, not paint them as the problem.

    • indeedYOUsay says:

      Salcido is the guy complaining about a dirty spoon as the cruise ship is taking on water. Maybe he should meet with the parents of these victimized girls and explain to them there’s nothing wrong with how the police department is managed?

  2. fixmycorruptpd says:

    There’s always been a disconnect between the troops and the command here, like they are drunk with power and have an adolescent mind of what to do with it. Each one of them is known for bullying employees, playing favorites, and turning the department morale to shit.

    Some of the latest appointments are supportive of employees, but the Pickens picked command are the worst of the worst. They are the bad apples spoiling the rest. Crow has a decision to make. Keep the rotten apples or replace them with leadership capable of retaining people.

    You can’t police 82,000 people with a 7 cops, but university management keeps doing the same thing expecting something to change at the pd. So much for intellectual worth. I guess pride is too important, more important than another parent’s child, more important than the safety of 82,000 students.

  3. guerriero says:

    If this police department was a business the doors would have closed years ago. Because it’s publicly funded there are no fiscal, management, and performance expectations. The single mandate of “stay out of the press” is falling apart and the crack is widening. The shoestring solutions are irresponsible and dangerous.

  4. yolo says:

    What’s to stop the frequency of crime in the area when we have two people on and two are overtime units? This shit is absurd. On any given day there are more useless command staff in Tempe then there are people on shift working patrol. I can only imagine the spin they are throwing to the media, but the schedule doesn’t lie as willfully as our leadership.

    • popo39machine says:

      This is what happens when you run everyone out who doesn’t fit into your social club. The legendary lack of leadership, backbone, and employee support are all still here.

  5. DL500unit says:

    How many victims of opportunistic criminals will there be before the dysfunction is replaced at ASUPD and we are able to be a functioning deterrent instead of a report writing service?

    We don’t need the command staff numbers we have, that equal a city agency, when we can’t even staff patrol. Divert that funding to the people patrolling and doing the work because this is a fucking joke.

  6. popo39machine says:

    Doing the same thing with the same flunkie command is going do what exactly? Give you different results? The sand castle can’t stand the tide and I hope the media exposes the whole mess. Only then will the public get a full view of what they’re paying for and not receiving.

  7. indeedYOUsay says:

    As long as you have officers crawling the walls to get out once they get a taste of asupd supervision, politics, and cronyism you will repeatedly see examples like this for years to come. The Michael Crow leadership circle would recognize and understand this if they were leaders themselves.

    • DoneSon says:

      It’s not going to end, Thompson has no will to do anything or hasn’t been given the power to do anything meaningful upstairs.

  8. Embudo says:

    If the ASU PD leadership refuses to change how it operates and the university’s leadership fails to properly fund and allot the ASU PD with the necessary number of sworn officers, the only other way, besides potential law suits, to affect positive change within the ASU PD and university, is to expose their pernicious methods of operation through the public media

    The Arizona Republic, Sunday, September 21, 2014, edition, highlights our anemic staffing numbers for patrol. The article is on the front page of the Republic and is a well-written piece depicting our many problems within the ASU PD by investigative reporter Anne Ryman and Rob O’Dell.

    The article spotlights, to the masses, how dangerous the ASU campuses are and our inability to provide the level of safety and security for our students, faculty, staff and visitors while on ASU’s four campuses.

    The university’s leadership is just as culpable for our lack of adequate patrol officers as current and former command staff members who willfully or negligently mismanaged ASU PD resources over the years, to include their most vital resources, their employees

    Nothing will change fundamentally within the ASU PD until virtually every member in the current command staff is removed from their positions and held accountable for our lack of patrol officers.

    The university’s leadership also has some accountability as it allowed the department to be mismanaged and poorly staffed under the former chief, John Pickens, for over 14-years!

    Hopefully, with the continual exposure, on the local and national level, the university’s leadership will be forced to make the much-needed changes within the ASU PD and the Arizona Board of Regents will make the much-needed changes within the university’s leadership.

  9. Getitright says:

    This is what Mike Thompson blames FMLA and injuries on, pretending we would have adequate staffing if it wasn’t for issues out of his control. This is a man looking for every excuse to keep his job while applying for a new one.

  10. twocents says:

    They have been talking to us about fixing the staffing problems for three years straight. They act as if this is a new problem. It’s nothing new. Thompson is saying the exact same thing Pickens was saying about staffing. “We have people in the process, we have people in the academy, and we have more laterals coming on board.

    What Pickens…Thompson both fail to come to grips with is as long as the problem people remain entrenched in the management positions of this agency get ready for more fleeing officers. The new officers leave faster than fry cooks a McDonald’s. They’re always hiring to, at least that’s what our former chief liked to say. Maybe that’s where he got a job, haven’t heard about him coming back to the university.

  11. DoneSon says:

    When haven’t we been understaffed? Ever year I’ve been here we’ve been understaffed and put into an unsafe workplace.

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