Winston Salem Journal: WFU police department, others watch case in N.C. Supreme Court
From the Winston-Salem Journal (2/18/13): A case that started with the arrest of a 19-year-old Elon University student in 2010 for underage drinking and resisting an officer is forcing the N.C. Supreme Court to decide whether campus police at private colleges must be as transparent as their municipal law-enforcement peers.
A reporter for a campus television news program asked Elon University’s police chief for a copy of the arrest record. What Nick Ochsner received said nothing about whether the officer had to chase down the student or how he was alleged to have resisted arrest, his mother, attorney Ann Ochsner, said.
The campus police said it didn’t have to produce anything more because, as part of a private university, a state law requiring a government agency to turn over public records on request didn’t apply.
The supreme court heard arguments Wednesday in Raleigh in a case that could define the role of officers who aren’t clearly public officials yet have arrest authority that other private employees don’t have.