Students caught at Victor’s face MU, MPD fines

Photo by Danny Alfonzo/ daniel.alfonzo@mu.edu

Photo by Danny Alfonzo/ daniel.alfonzo@mu.edu

Students, as well as workers at Victor’s Nightclub on Van Buren Street, are still recovering from the raid on April 11 in which 105 Marquette students were busted for underage drinking and possession of false identification.

Students who were caught at Victor’s with fake IDs last week were sent citations by the Milwaukee Police Department, and many of the citations were for $374.

In addition to fines from MPD, some students have been assigned dates for student conduct hearings.

Assistant Dean of Students Erin Lazzar said the student conduct processes will depend on the specific cases and have no affiliation with the investigation through MPD.

“Our student conduct process is completely separate from MPD and is not informed by their action or inaction,” Lazzar said. “Decisions in student conduct hearings are made based on the evidence presented and on an individual basis. Given those things, it is possible that a student found responsible for violations of the alcohol policy may have fines assigned by Marquette, as well as MPD.”

Andrew Brodzeller, an associate director of university communication, said Marquette’s alcohol policy gives the Office of Student Affairs many options in disciplining students.

“We can say that all of those students will go through the conduct process,” Brodzeller said. “There are a variety of consequences the Office of Student Affairs could take.”

According to the Marquette student handbook, students who are caught with a false form of identification are guilty of not complying with Category A of the alcohol policy, thus warranting a $50 fine upon first offense. Consequences may vary based on a student’s disciplinary record.

Victor Jones, the owner of Victor’s, said the nightclub has made a few changes to prevent underage students from attempting to enter the bar without proper identification.

Jones said the bus that met students outside of the Union Sports Annex on Marquette’s campus has been discontinued.

“Surprisingly, the students did not take the bus to Victor’s, but they took it home,” Jones said. “We thought that was a good thing, because everyone got home safe.”

Jones said the nightclub has also stopped “College Night” on Thursday and has replaced it with a free pizza night for anyone with the appropriate ID. In addition, Jones said when a group comes in for a bar crawl, he now notifies the police and invites them to check in any time.

Jones said the ID scanner the bar had previously been using has been in repair, so entry into the bar was at the discretion of the bouncers.

“We had one scanner that we used from last year that was failing,” Jones said. “We are currently looking at more places with a more user friendly scanner.”

Ben Silbert, the CEO of Bar & Club Stats, a company that makes scanners for bars and nightclubs nationwide, said not having a scanner may be appealing for competition between bars, but owners should take advantage of a scanner because it shows increased precaution in dealing with underage drinkers.

“An ID scanner is a big deterrent,” Silbert said. “Someone underage or with a fake ID will go to another bar down the street. As an owner, you don’t want that increased liability anyway.”

A freshman in the College of Arts & Sciences, who spoke on the condition of anonymity for fear of retribution, said she has been to Victor’s five times and her ID has never been scanned.

“They have only ever looked at the front of my ID,” she said.

Another freshman in the College of Arts & Sciences, who spoke on the condition of anonymity for the same reason, said she believes there should not be harsh consequences for students who drink underage, because many students were let into the nightclub without a form of identification.

“I have been there more than I can count on my hands and toes,” she said. “Never been scanned.”

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