UVU student Ginger Anderson is claiming excessive use of force after her arrest by campus police.
Anderson was arrested for resisting arrest after facing charges of vandalizing university property. In early January, Anderson and an unnamed faculty member drew on a campus map. The map, Anderson said, is misleading due to a mistake in the printing of the compass, making it upside down.
The campus police approached Anderson two days after she drew on the map with a permanent marker, asking her to come with them to the campus police station so that they could issue her a citation. Anderson refused.
“I was just trying to process it,” Anderson said, “like ‘he’s really going to give me a ticket for this? Are you kidding me?’”
Anderson was recorded by a lapel camera on one of the officer’s uniforms saying that she would not go and asking to talk to whomever was in charge. She claimed that she wasn’t the first to alter the map. One of the arresting officers told her that it didn’t matter and that she would still be fined.
“It’s a super confusing situation,” Jake Hussey, student, said. “I watched the video a couple of times. They claimed to arrest her for resisting arrest, but it didn’t look like they were trying to arrest her to begin with, just issue a fine. So, did they need to slam her against the wall? Probably not.”
The entire situation seems suspicious to those siding with Anderson, student Alicia Taylor said that she thought it was excessive considering that Anderson didn’t vandalize the sign by writing or drawing something inappropriate.
“It’s not like she wrote or drew something bad. She was trying to help. I guess no good deed goes unpunished,” Taylor said.
The university sent the police to find those who wrote on the sign to issue citations to supposedly help cover the costs of replacing the sign.
“Do you realize that they now have to replace that sign now because you drew on it,” one of the officers said to Anderson during the confrontation.
But, as it turns out, the university did not have to replace the sign, it was cleaned off within days of Anderson’s alleged vandilization.
“It’s a little weird that something as easily fixed as taking a rag and cleaning solution to a sign should require cuffing someone,” Taylor said.
Not everyone is convinced that Anderson wasn’t justly treated.
“Everyone knows that you comply with police,” Heather Richins, student at UVU, said. “It’s just stupid to refuse to go with them, especially when all they are going to do is give you a ticket. She could have gone with them and then contested the ticket in court later. I think the fact that she was disrespectful and then fought back after they clearly told her her options shows that she was being dumb. Common sense would have prevented the whole thing.”
The Utah County Sheriff’s Department was called in to review the footage and evidence and have issued a statement saying that because Anderson was both actively and passively resisting arrest the officers were following protocol and were not breaking any laws.
The uncut video is available on kutv.com.
Nicole Shepard is an Integrated Studies major at UVU. She is emphasizing in Writing Studies, Journalism and Peace and Justice Studies, and will graduate spring 2014. Nicole is hoping to work in cause journalism and advocate for restorative justice practices. She has lived in Europe three times she is also considering graduate school in the UK. Nicole is the news editor for the UVU Review.