Statement on Hanover Police Sting Operations

The recent unilateral actions by the Hanover Police raise a number of questions on intent and protocol. As an undergraduate, I witnessed, first hand, similar sting operations which drove entirely the wrong behavior and ultimately backfired on the Hanover police. While I respect the duty of law enforcement to maintain public safety, the recent announcement by Chief Giaccone that the Hanover Police Department will conduct sting operations on campus, directed against students generally and the Greek system specifically, raises troubling questions.

With no apparent emergency precipitating immediate action, I would call on the chief to delay implementing his plan until he can consult with President Kim, members of the administration, and appropriate campus leaders. Town & Gown relationships work best, especially on matters with such important stakes, when all of the players sit down and work through the relevant issues. According to The Dartmouth's reporting this has not occurred.

All members of the Dartmouth community recognize the dangers of alcohol abuse, but we equally recognize that enforcement actions can worsen problems if they are applied without attention to likely consequences. President Kim - an acknowledged global expert on public health and risk reduction - has spoken about the need to increase social options and the responsibilities of the Greek system for the actions of members and guests.

I hope that Chief Giaccone would support these objectives; I do not believe that an uncoordinated and invasive sweep of Greek houses will do so.

For more on the Hanover Police Department plans, see