05-01.02 – Policy on Off-Campus Disorderly and Disruptive Behavior

  1. Policy Statement:

    Under the provisions of the Code of Student Conduct, Towson University (“University”) may bring charges against a student or group of students whose “off-campus actions affect the University community or the University’s pursuit of its mission, policies or procedures.” (Code of Student Conduct, section C. Scope, #1) Off-campus behavior which is disorderly, disruptive or harmful to others in the community or the neighborhoods surrounding the University is also subject to discipline. Off-campus actions subject to discipline under this Policy shall be referred to collectively as “off-campus misconduct.”

    When addressing the off-campus behavior of its students, the University is primarily interested in responding to students whose behavior is disruptive or harmful to others in the community and that violates local, state or federal laws or the University Code of Student Conduct.

    Off-campus misconduct is prohibited and is subject to discipline through the University’s disciplinary process. Students who own, lease, or live in off-campus residences shall be held accountable for the disorderly and disruptive actions of others occurring within the leased or owned premises and shall be subject to discipline under the Code of Student Conduct. It is not necessary for students to receive a criminal or civil citation in order for their behavior to be subject to discipline.

  2. Definitions: 

    1. “Disorderly Conduct” is conduct which is a violation of local, state or federal laws or the University Code of Student Conduct. Examples of disorderly conduct include but are not limited to underage alcohol possession or consumption, public intoxication, noise violations, public urination, and harassment of others. 

    2. “Disruptive to Others” is conduct which is likely to disrupt the activities of a reasonable person going about his/her daily life in the communities surrounding the University or one’s home. 

  3. Responsible Executive and Office:

    Responsible Executive:
    Vice President for Student Affairs

    Responsible Office:
    Office of Student Conduct & Civility Education 

  4. Entities Affected by this Policy:

    All Students.

  5. Procedures: 

    1. The University has developed a process by which it will address incidents of disorderly and disruptive conduct in its neighborhoods. It is as follows: 

      1. Advice to Complainants

        The University will advise students, faculty, staff, and its neighboring communities of the following steps it would like possible complainants to follow if an incident of Disorderly Conduct disrupts the community or neighborhoods: 

        1. Call the local police during the disturbance so that they can address the behavior while it is occurring. 

        2. Talk to the students after the incident, describing the offending behavior and asking that it be stopped. 

        3. If the offending behavior is taking place in an apartment complex, call the apartment management to ask that the behavior be addressed. 

        4. Call the neighborhood representative at an appropriate time, possibly the following day, to report the incident. 

        5. Report the behavior by using the on-line reporting form located on the Student Conduct & Civility Education website, the Towson University Student Lifeline or . Any one of these reporting resources will be addressed the following workday and will be logged by the University. 

      2. Procedure If Civil or Criminal Citation Issued

        If a citation is issued by the local police, the University’s Office of Student Conduct & Civility Education will investigate and determine whether the students are responsible for violating local, state or federal laws or violating the Code of Student Conduct. If they are found responsible, they will be sanctioned. (See section V.A.6 below.) 

      3. Procedure If No Citation Issued – House Visit

        If no citation is issued by the local police for a first occurrence, the University will send representatives from the Towson University Police Department and the Campus Life Office to meet with the student residents at the off-campus residence. The local police may also be involved in visiting with the residents. The University representatives will discuss the incident with the students, discuss appropriate neighborhood behavior, describe the consequences of disruptive behavior and if the circumstances warrant it, issue an informal warning including a description of potential fines and other related sanctions. The informal warnings will not be noted in individual students’ disciplinary records; however, a record that a discussion occurred will be kept. 

      4. Student Organizations, Athletic Teams, Etc.

        If the students involved are members of the same student organization including an athletic team, fraternity, or sorority, the University will notify the appropriate University official, i.e. group advisor or coach, to collaborate in addressing the allegation. 

      5. Subsequent Complaints

        If the University receives a second similar complaint involving the same students, or the same premises, the University’s Office of Student Conduct & Civility Education will investigate to determine whether there is reason to charge the students with violations of the Code of Student Conduct. If there is reason, the Office of Student Conduct & Civility Education may proceed with charges, determine responsibility and if appropriate, issue sanctions. 

      6. Possible Sanctions

        The Code of Student Conduct lists a variety of penalties which may be imposed on students or student organizations for violations of the Code. The Office of Student Conduct & Civility Education may use any of the penalties listed in the Code to address violations. However, if students engaging in Disorderly Conduct develop a pattern of violations relating to disruptive behavior, the Office of Student Conduct & Civility Education may respond with sequentially more serious sanctions. Students may be put on University probation and fined $250 per student resident, increasing to $500 for subsequent incidents of a similar nature and other educational sanctions as deemed appropriate by the Office of Student Conduct & Civility Education. For particularly egregious violations, the University may impose a more severe sanction.

Related Policies:

Code of Student Conduct

Approval Date: August 22, 2006

Effective Date: August 28, 2006

Amended Date: August 27, 2012

Approved By: President’s Council July 27, 2006

Signed By: President’s Council

How to Request the Policy PDF

This online version of the policy may include updated links and names of departments. To request a PDF of the original, signed version of this policy, email the Office of the General Counsel, .