CCU’s rise in drug and gun arrests due to campus visitors

Grand Strand

CONWAY, SC (WBTW) – Coastal Carolina University saw a rise in the number of drug-related and weapons arrests on campus in 2017 compared to 2016, however, officials say most of the people are not students.

According to the most recent CLERY report, in 2017, CCU Police made 114 arrests for drugs, like marijuana and sometimes cocaine on campus; in 2016 they made 83 drug-related arrests.

During that same time, the number of weapons-related arrests rose from one to 13, but nine out of the 13 arrests were people who were not affiliated with CCU.

“Weapons can be anything from a handgun to a rifle, and most of the cases when we arrested people, they were people that were not currently students,” Captain Thom Mezzapelle with CCU Police said.

University police say they were able to make a lot of those stops using their license plate reader, which alerts officers when a driver has expired tags, a suspended license, or a warrant.

“We go and stop the car, we talk to the people, they have things in the car, and we go and find the stuff that’s in the car, so we like it because we’re actually getting things that we don’t need to have in this community,” Mezzapelle said.

Since there is no way to stop the crime coming in from the outside, CCU Police say they depend on students and staff to report situations that don’t look right.

For CCU’s full Cleary report, click here.

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