Q & A

Last Updated - May 08, 2008 8:55 a.m.

Police Activity Public Q&A


What happened on Tuesday, May 6?

SDSU Police concluded a year-long investigation with the arrest of  18 SDSU students suspected of selling drugs to other students.  The majority of the arrests took place this morning in the College Area and on the SDSU campus as part of a joint operation led by SDSU Police and the federal Drug Enforcement Agency.  Related arrests have taken place over the past 12 months.  Tuesday's arrests focused on individuals suspected of drug trafficking/sales.  Updated information on this investigation/arrests is available at:


Why was the DEA's participation necessary?

Assistance from the DEA was requested by SDSU to facilitate a complex investigation – including an extensive undercover operation since December.  This operation culminated with the arrest of 18 SDSU students today.  SDSU President Stephen L. Weber has expressed his appreciation to DEA officers as well as the District Attorney's Office for their support of this important investigation.


How long has this investigation been underway?

SDSU launched the investigation approximately one year ago.  The DEA was brought in in December 2007.


How were arrests conducted on campus?

Officers receive extensive training on appropriate use of force.  In the case of those arrests made on campus today, officers took extra efforts to not be disruptive of the campus environment while ensuring safety.  Officers attempted to contact as many suspects as possible early in the morning while they were still at home.  A "knock, notice and enter" approach was used:  officers with search and arrest warrants knock on the suspect's door, identify themselves, and take the suspect into custody.  Each group of plain clothes officers was accompanied by a university officer in uniform. 


Are drugs a serious problem at SDSU?  Is SDSU doing enough?

Drugs are a problem on nearly every university campus in the U.S.; SDSU has taken this action to confront it directly.  Certainly, Tuesday's arrests underscore the scope of the challenges universities face as we fight this major societal problem.  In addition to the enforcement work done by the SDSU Police, the university provides a variety of programs to educate its students about the dangers of drug use.  More information on these programs is available at


Will there be more arrests?

Possibly.  Given the size and scope of Tuesday's operation, there may be additional leads generated on illegal drug activity on or near the campus.  However, law enforcement officials believe they have apprehended the majority of those involved.  Anyone with information about criminal activity is encouraged to contact the SDSU Police immediately at (619) 594-1991. 


What changes if any will SDSU make as a result of these arrests?

SDSU will continue to do what is necessary – through both enforcement and education – to encourage our students to make the responsible choices to ensure the health and safety of our campus community.


What will happen to those students arrested on Tuesday, May 6?

All of the students arrested Tuesday have been suspended.  They will not be returning to class or taking final exams until completion of a due-process review.  Those living in university-managed housing have been evicted.


What is due-process review?

Pursuant to California law, students are entitled to an administrative review prior to imposing discipline, which may include expulsion. However, there is no place within the campus community for those who would engage in illegal activity – activity that endangers themselves and those around them.


Should students and their parents be concerned about a safe environment at SDSU?

The health and safety of our students is SDSU's highest priority.  SDSU is dedicated to higher learning and to human growth and development.  The use and/or trafficking in illegal substances are inconsistent with our values and with the pursuit of our mission.  We are determined to remove people from our community who place our students at risk, and to see that they are turned over to the criminal justice system.  Tuesday's arrests are a big step forward towards a safer environment for our students, faculty, staff and neighbors.


What will happen to the fraternities involved?

SDSU has placed on interim suspension six fraternities - those with members who were arrested today. These fraternities have been suspended pending a hearing into evidence gathered as part of the investigation. The six fraternities include: Lambda Chi Alpha, Phi Kappa Psi, Phi Kappa Theta, Theta Chi, Sigma Alpha Epsilon and Sigma Alpha Mu. 


Is it safe for my son or daughter to be part of a fraternity or sorority?

Students should ask appropriate questions and join a responsible organization that reflects his/her own interests and values. 


How has the community responded to the investigation?

The feedback SDSU has received thus far from members of the campus community, alumni, parents and friends across the country strongly supports the university's actions. Following Tuesday's news conference, university officials began receiving many very positive comments in the forms of e-mails and phone calls. 


Will the drug busts have an impact on San Diego State's reputation?

Over the past few days, we've heard from many students, faculty, staff, alumni and parents who strongly support San Diego State's actions to initiate and aggressively pursue this investigation. For those graduating students who have expressed concerns about how this subject might arise during job interviews – we hope they will say they are proud to be an Aztec and proud of the way SDSU addressed this important issue head-on. 


What impact might this have on alumni and donor support?

In fact, there's been an outpouring of support from our alumni and friends. They appreciate the fact that SDSU took the initiative on this important issue. Those closest to us already have an understanding of SDSU's strong academic reputation and long commitment to service. They know of the incredible trajectory the university has been on and the highly talented faculty, staff and students we continue to attract in record numbers. SDSU's actions on this issue change none of that, but, instead, demonstrate leadership and openness. 


What about prospective students and their parents who may be concerned about drug and alcohol use at SDSU?

Drug and alcohol use is a concern at nearly every college campus in America. The difference is that San Diego State has taken strong actions to address this issue. In addition to enforcement, we provide a variety of educational programs – including programs specific to our residence halls – to provide our students with the information and support they need to make the right choices. We welcome questions and concerns from prospective students and their parents about drugs and alcohol use at SDSU. We believe that as they learn what the university is doing, and hear from current students about student life, they will be even more strongly committed to coming to SDSU. 


What resources are available to students?

A variety of educational resources are available to students through SDSU's Alchol and Other Drug (AOD) Office.  Additional information is available at


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