The student neighborhood (cover photo) is where many noise violations occur on campus. Courtesy of Flyer News
University of Dayton students who play their music at high levels can face disciplinary action from not only the school but also the city of Dayton.
Students will be sent to the Dayton Municipal Court if they do not listen to the warnings given by police, said Public Safety Capt. Joseph P. Cairo. Although the noise in resident halls is often handled by resident assistants, Public Safety officers will cite those in the student neighborhoods. Public Safety says that noise violations are enforced equally in both school-owned housing and landlord housing. Capt. Cairo said that Public Safety gets calls for noise complaints every weekend.
“A campus police officer will report on the noise,” Cairo said. “They will first evaluate the situation to see if action is needed.”
Public Safety says that warnings will usually be given first. For repeat violations, students are referred to UD’s Code of Conduct. From Aug. 12 to Oct. 10, Public Safety issued 145 warnings for noise violations, 36 referrals to the Code of Conduct and issued seven misdemeanor citations for violations of the Dayton city ordinance.
The ordinance encompasses a variety of illegal noises, which include music that is louder than necessary for the person listening and yelling that would disturb the comfort of others. This has been a law in Dayton since the 50s.
Violators of the ordinance are found guilty of a minor misdemeanor, which can include a fine of up to $150. If charged again within a year of the first charge, violators will be guilty of a fourth-degree misdemeanor, which can include a fine of up to $250. For third and subsequent offenses in the same year as the first charge, violators will receive a third-degree misdemeanor, which can include a fine of up to $500 as well as imprisonment for up to 60 days.
In the UD Code of Conduct, excessive noise is listed as environmental disrespect. Students violating the Code of Conduct face disciplinary action from the school. They can be given a fine or community service hours, or a combination. Violating a local, state or federal law is forbidden at UD and can result in additional disciplinary action from the school.
“I think it’s important that students respect the community and their neighbors,” says Chris Johnson, a senior student who lives on Lawnview Avenue. “I think it’s especially important on school nights and even on weekends you should start to quiet down around midnight.”
Johnson said that last year when he and his roommates lived on College Park Avenue they heard people yelling more than noise from parties. Johnson said he believes that students walking through the neighborhoods should be conscientious of those in the houses they pass.
Librarian Katy Kelly said students will sometimes sleep in Roesch Library to find a quiet place to study and rest. Kelly said she notices students sleeping throughout the library but is most surprised at the number of students sleeping on the noisiest floor of the building.
While the University of Dayton does not have a policy against sleeping in Roesch Library, it can be a “discourteous use of high-demand study and research space,” according to the school’s website.
“For the most part, our students are respectful and comply with warnings,” said Rodney Chatman, chief of police at UD. “But in other cases, we need to take corrective action to reaffirm to our students that their decisions and actions affect people where they live, in our classrooms, residence halls, houses, neighborhood, campus, city and country, and ultimately the world community.”
Excessive noise can be reported by calling the University of Dayton Department of Public Safety at 937-229-2121.