University of Dayton administrators met Monday, March 18, to debrief the previous morning’s St. Patrick’s Day disturbance on Kiefaber Street, said university president Dan Curran in an exclusive interview with Flyer News.
University officials are “exploring all reasonable options” with regard to next year’s St. Patrick’s Day, said Bill Fischer, vice president of Student Development.
“We are, obviously, taking a comprehensive review of all of the various options to consider in moving forward for future St. Patrick’s Day events,” Fischer said. He said these options include the possibility of strengthening the guest policy and adjusting the academic calendar to place a break during St. Patrick’s Day.
Curran, however, told Flyer News he does not see moving spring break to St. Patrick’s Day as a way to approach the situation.
“I’m personally one who doesn’t think one event should dictate the academic calendar,” Curran said.
The re-evaluation of St. Patrick’s Day comes after a major disturbance took place early Sunday morning on the 400 block of Kiefaber. Police from throughout the Miami Valley donned riot gear and forced revelers into houses after individuals threw 40-ounce glass bottles into the road and damaged 11 vehicles, including a police cruiser.
According to a university press release, Fischer “indicated administrators would involve students in discussing the incident, recommending ways to curtail high-risk drinking and limiting the number of college and high school students who visit campus on St. Patrick’s Day.”
Curran called the incident a “setback” for the university, and Fischer said his reaction to the incident was one of “significant disappointment.”
“The behavior with regard to that incident was deplorable, unacceptable,” Fischer said. “Any student that is identified as having been involved in that particular incident will be met with swift disciplinary action.”
Fischer said the disciplinary action could range from a warning to dismissal from the university.
Following the disturbance, an Ohio Liquor Control agent arrested one male, who is not a student at the university, for underage drinking and public intoxication, according to a UD press release. The university also said five UD students received citations for not complying with police officers during the incident.
Yet, despite the disturbance, St. Patrick’s Day citations were down for the second year in a row, and fewer students received disciplinary citations than last year.
Over the course of the weekend, public safety officers cited 45 students through the university student conduct system, according to the press release. The university said 14 of those students also received court citations. Twenty-four non-university students were charged through the courts, and seven of the 24 were physically arrested, according to the press release.
Last year, 52 people were charged with citations and 143 received warnings during the weekend, according to the Flyer News archives. Thirty-three of the 52 individuals charged last year were non-UD students, and 10 of the 19 students were cited with criminal actions, five through the Ohio Department of Commerce Division of Liquor Control.
“The majority of students had fun during the weekend,” Fischer said through an emailed statement released by the university. “We commend them for celebrating responsibly and express our appreciation to [university] and area police officers who quickly broke up the disturbance.”
Flyer News will continue to cover this story as it develops, and will have more coverage of our exclusive interview with Curran in our next issue on stands Friday.