Colorado State University officials today announced plans to cooperate fully with Fort Collins city officials following the arrest of two people at a large gathering just north of campus late last night.
Fort Collins Mayor Ann Azari said today that she appreciates the cooperation of the university and pointed out the incident is a community issue and not a student issue.
"I don’t want to see a situation where anything bad that happens is blamed on the students. This is not a student issue– this is an issue of some community members behaving inappropriately," Azari said. Azari also said she plans to work with university administrators and student representatives, in addition to the community at large, following the incident.
Keith Miser, vice president for student affairs at Colorado State, said that the university will work closely with city officials and police to identify any students who were involved and will take appropriate disciplinary actions. Miser did point out, however, that last night’s incident is very unusual.
"This type of problem is very rare, and in fact we consider ourselves fortunate to have as good a relationship as we do between our students, the local police and the community as a whole," Miser said. "We will now do everything we can, working together with the community, to make sure this type of thing does not occur."
Police were called last night at around midnight for noise complaints in the area just north of the university campus. As police tried to break up the several parties in the area, some of the more than 500 people gathered resisted and threw bottles and rocks. One large fire was started with debris in the street.
"From talking to fellow students, it is clear that this isn’t just a student issue, but rather something that involves many members of the community as well. However, its also clear that some students were involved and we as students, as part of the larger community, must take a share of the responsibility for that," Steve O’Dorisio, president of Associated Students of Colorado State said. "We now need to take the next steps and work to communicate and to deal head-on with some of the issues in the community as a whole."
O’Dorisio said that it is important to note that the incident was not linked in any way to an official student gathering or to any fraternity or sorority event.
Miser said the university and students will continue to work with the city to prevent further incidents.
"It’s important for us to respond accordingly to this incident and to continue to work together to prevent this type of problem, while at the same time understanding that this kind of behavior is not something our students are usually involved in," Miser said. "This was an unusual and isolated incident."