If you ask a college student about the security and police services in Rohnert Park, I’m sure of a common response, and it’s not a good one.
Personally, the two interactions I’ve experienced with the town’s police have left me with a bitter taste in my mouth.
Even though they are here to protect students and help keep the community safe, I can’t help wonder if there is a bias against college students.
Things like 120-days and getting parking tickets just for not parking in a certain lot seem like police are either very bored or just feel like ruining somebody’s day.
There was a time when “crime alert” emails felt like they were getting sent out every week.
Another mysterious person was hiding out waiting to attack females.
Overall, it brought crime awareness to Sonoma State students and fear to any female who walks alone. Whether it was on campus or just right next to it, there were crimes being committed.
Further, a few female students have had to be put in situations where they were forced to fight for their lives and now suffer from the trauma of their past situation.
While these incidents keep occurring, police services are too busy breaking up parties and making sure everyone has the right parking pass.
The 120-day punishment is ridiculous. Just because there are more than 11 people in a house the police are given the ability to issue a 120-day, putting a house on probation for about four months.
This means the residents can’t have too many people over, no loud music as well as any gathering perceived as a party. In contrast, what the police don’t understand is that there’s a difference between a party and having people over.
“When you’re 21 and you’re having a few people over to drink,” said Sonoma State third year Kayla Parkers, “how is that illegal or causing any harm to the society?”
Of course there are parties that are out of control, we are college students.
Yet, those are also referred to as the “sweaty parties” and everyone knows it’s only a matter of time before the police show up.
But when a house with five residents each have two friends, that is referred to as a party?
Also, the way police officers go about issuing the 120-day shows the true bias and how much they don’t care about anything one has to say, because to them, I’m a college student who has friends over and playing loud music.
Therefore, it’s seen like a party and for some reason students are punished for partying.
What about the locals that live in Rohnert Park, when they have birthday or family parties, are the police pounding on their doors?
Lastly, the parking situation at Sonoma State is another example of how students pay for every little thing and for some reason they can’t park wherever they want.
When it’s late at night and a female is going to be walking to her car alone, do you really think it’s 100 percent safe to park in a lot that is far from where she is coming from?
The police response is there is an escort service provided that one can use. Instead of spending the time to go to Police Services to ask for an officer to escort her, she could have just parked in a lot near her location.
However, because she didn’t spend more money on a specific parking pass, she’ll receive a ticket.