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800.13 - Trespassing

University Group Policy #800.13

I.  Policy Statement

Purpose: To implement procedures for the issuance of trespass warnings and the arrest for violation of terms of trespass warnings.

Winston-Salem State University is a tax-supported institution and may be visited by the general public under certain conditions. Persons who commit crimes on campus, violate university policies, regulations, rules, or pose a risk to campus safety or security have no “right” to be on university property and may be advised to leave by the Chancellor or his/her designee (campus police). These individuals may be removed from the campus by use of a trespass warning under authority of North Carolina General Statutes 14-159.12 or 14-159.13.

II.    Guidelines

Trespass Warning

  1. Persons may be directed to leave or prohibited from entering the campus or a specific area, and given trespass warnings if they have done any of the following:
    1. Committed any crime on campus;
    2. Threatened and/or interfered with any member of the university community, including faculty, staff, students, and visitors, or have acted in a way that poses or indicates a threat of disruption to normal university operations;
    3. Violated university policies, regulations, or rules;
    4. Been observed prowling around buildings or parking lots without satisfactory explanation;
    5. Otherwise behaved in a suspicious or disorderly manner;
    6. Represent a continuing threat to the campus community by having committed serious criminal offense(s) on or off campus.
  2. Members of the university community, who fall into the above categories should, if possible, be handled through the appropriate Dean, Department Head, or Student Conduct. They may however, be directed to leave certain areas.
  3. Terminations, Evictions, Suspensions and Expulsions
    1. Request for trespass warning by a university official, supervisor or manager.
      1. A manager, supervisor, or Human Resources professional may request that an employee be trespassed from a specific area of campus or from the entire university. The witness must provide a written statement that includes their name, title, department, and telephone number. The witness will be advised that he or she may need to testify.
      2. The officer must then determine from the facts provided by the complaining witness whether the evidence supports a trespass warning based on the criteria in Part A, Section 1 above. If the facts do not support a trespass warning, then none will be issued. If the facts support a trespass warning, the officer will then issue the trespass and complete any other documentation as required.
    2. Evictions from Student Housing. The University Housing policy requires that students will be evicted from housing for drug violations and other violations of housing policies as required. Housing will issue an eviction letter to the student with a copy sent to the Campus Police. Campus Police will prepare a trespass warning from all university housing and send it certified mail, return receipt to the student and to the student’s university-issued email account. The trespass will coincide with the length of the eviction.
    3. Suspensions and Expulsions. The Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs or his or her designee will send letters to suspend or expel students as a result of some major disciplinary action. This letter may include provisions concerning trespass from university property or specific areas of campus. A copy of the letter will be forwarded to Campus Police. Upon receipt of the suspension or expulsion letter, Campus Police will prepare a trespass warning and send it certified mail, return receipt to the student and to the student’s university-issued email account. The trespass will coincide with the conditions set forth in the suspension or expulsion letter. If necessary, Campus Policy will serve the trespass warning and disciplinary letters directly to the students.
  4. Free Speech. The University policy on free speech requires a permit through Student Affairs. If the subject does not have a permit, they will be directed to stop their activity and proceed to Student Affairs to obtain the necessary permit. If the person refuses to stop and get the permit the person may be trespassed for violation of university policy.
  5. Time Limited and/or Location Trespass Warnings. There are instances when a subject may be trespassed from a particular building or location for a short period of time. In such cases, the officer will issue a trespass warning listing the limitations to include time periods. If the subject, after having been issued a trespass warning, returns during the specified time limit then they will be arrested for second degree trespass.
  6. Trespass warnings are to be limited in scope to that which is reasonably necessary for the protection of the University and its community.
  7. All trespass warnings will be entered into the database and maintain all hard copy trespass warnings in central files.
  8. Officers must be aware of the legal basis for detaining a person and should not detain persons simply to issue trespass documentation if the person demands to leave. In this situation, officers may verbally trespass the person and then complete the documentation.

Appeal Process

The trespass appeals procedure is described on the back of the trespass warning. Members may be called as witnesses in appeals.

III.     Applicability

This policy is applicable to the campus community of Winston-Salem State University.

IV.    Compliance

Trespass Arrest

  1. A person who has been warned and refuses to leave may be arrested.
  2. In areas that are properly posted “no trespassing,” officers are authorized to issue a citation or make an arrest for second degree trespass, where appropriate.
  3. Officers may arrest when a person is detained on campus property and records indicate a previous trespass warning notice. Written warnings, court orders and University disciplinary order/decisions remain in effect for the duration stated in the order/decision, and may result in arrest for that time period.
  4. If there is any doubt concerning the arrest, the officer should give another warning and escort the person from campus. If a review of the incident by campus police officials indicates the individual was trespassing, officers may obtain a warrant for second degree trespass.

Responsible Division: Vice Chancellor and Chief of Staff

Authority: Board of Trustees


  • Adopted December 13, 2012

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