Indiana University rolled out a set of rules and regulations in early August including a law permitting police officers to enter Greek houses whenever they wanted without a permit.
In wake of the negative blowback from students (as well as national concern for the students’ 4th amendment rights), IU has amended the law on September 7.
Here’s what the law used to say:
IU Spokesperson Margie Smith-Simmons says the amended version of the law makes it clear that students’ 4th amendment rights are not being violated. She adds that violating their rights was never their intention.
Here’s what the new wording entails, according to Indiana Public Media:
The new wording is more limited. IU Police officers can enter only if they believe laws are being broken and taking time to get a warrant would endanger the health of safety of residents.
The new wording is a step in the right direction towards fairness, but I’ve got a couple gripes.
First, stop saying “students,” Margie. This law does not apply to all students. Just Greeks. That’s one of the reasons it’s such dog shit.
Second, the new wording still allows cops to enter a house whenever they want without a warrant. Yes, you took out the part that allows police to enter a residence to thwart a “probable destruction of evidence.” That’s great. But the part you left in — the part about allowing cops to enter without a warrant if they “believe laws are being broken” — still allows cops to break a students’ 4th amendment rights. “Believe laws are being broken” is far too broad of a term. A cop will walk by a house, hear music, deduce that there is likely a party and therefore underage drinking, then barge right in and bust it. If you want to be fair, make the law so cops can only enter if they believe there is “imminent danger” — not “imminent underage drinking.” Otherwise this re-wording is a farce.
According to an anonymous tipster from IU Greek life, the cops are already barging in unannounced for little to no reason. This re-wording of the law won’t change that — and saying that it will is an insult to your students’ intelligence..
[via Indiana Public Media]
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