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October 03, 1997 - Image 1

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The Michigan Daily, 1997-10-03

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One hundred seven years ofeditorialfreedom

Friday
October 3, 1997

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ROTC
cadets take
the plunge
By Reilly Brennan
For the Daily
Outfitted in army fatigues and climbing gear, Rambo flew
down the side of the Dentistry Building yesterday.
That's Matthew Rambo, a cadet in the University's
Reserve Officer Training Corps, who joined more than 35
my ROTC cadets in an annual training exercise of rap-
pelling off the 125-foot-high building
"It's primarily a confidence builder," said Army Major
Marsha Lunt, who helped train the cadets. She also took the
leap from the building's seventh floor.
The cadets trained for yesterday's exercise since the begin-
ning of the year, and many new ROTC cadets seemed excit-
ed but nervous before their plunge.
"I'm really excited," said LSA first-year student Melissa
Kinney, "I've had three weeks to stare at this building."
In addition to rappelling, ROTC cadets must complete two
eld training sessions each year. Cadets also go through
*tensive training in rifle marksmanship, first aid, military
'drill and fitness training.'
Training in basic life skills, such as first aid survival,
allows cadets to apply classroom lectures to real-life scenar-
ios.
Before the group rappelled, chisel-faced cadets first per-
fected their techniques on the lawn of North Hall, where
ROTC is headquartered. Then, they learned to make tight
and secure rope harnesses, called a swiss seat. One ROTC
instructor said to the group, "I don't want to see any tears, but
- it doesn't hurt it's not tight enough:"
From there, the cadets watched as older, more experienced
ROTC members gave a dry run, bounding - touching the
wall only a few times - from top to bottom.
"You can tell the experienced ones by the fewer times they
bound. The new ones will bound more and take a longer time
to reach the bottom," Lunt said.
When it was their time to rappel, a few of the new cadets
had twitching hands and shaky feet.
ROTC cadet David Paton said the height can be intimidat-
ing.
"It's kinda scary when you're on the ledge. You're just
*oking down," said Paton, an LSA sophomore. "But I'm
ready for this."
Besides occasioial bouts with wind and balance, all
trainees completed the rappelling session with success.
See ROTC, Page 5

DPS officer
cleared in
shooting

By Stephanie Hepburn
Daily Staff Reporter
The Department of Public Safety
officer who shot and killed Kevin
Nelson on Sept. 23 acted legally, the
Washtenaw County prosecutor said this
week.
The incident will be filed as a justifi-
able homicide. The DPS officer's name
has not yet been released.
Joseph Burke, Washtenaw County
chief assistant prosecutor, said the
attorney's office reviewed and dis-
cussed the case.
"We looked over the autopsy report,
the police report submitted in writing
by the officer and the regular crime
scene investigation," Burke said. "We
read the interviews by all the witnesses
at Northwood. All the information that
was submitted corroborated with the
officer."
According to the prosecutor's office,
the officer shot Nelson when he was
fatally stabbing LSA senior Tamara
Williams. The officer in question
approached Nelson and ordered him to
put down his knife. Nelson did not
comply with the demand, instead con-
tinuing to stab Williams in the back.
The officer shot Nelson twice with nine
millimeter bullets, ending Nelson's life.
It was the first time a DPS officer
had fired a weapon while on duty.
When investigating cases of homi-
cide by an officer, investigators look to
ensure the shooting is justified. Burke
said the Nelson shooting was clearly
justified._
"The officer must have reasonable
belief that the subject is a danger to other
people or the officer," Burke said.
"Sticking a knife in someone's back def-

initely creates a dangerous scenario."
If there is not sufficient evidence, the
officer can face serious charges.
"Criminal penalties (would) be
given," Burke said, referring to cases
when an officer is not justified to shoot.
"The officer (would) be accused of
manslaughter or murder, and most like-
ly taken off the force."
The prosecuting attorney's office sent a
prepared memo to DPS Director Leo
Heatley stating that the case was reviewed
and that all data favored the officer.
DPS spokesperson Elizabeth Hall
said the officer will soon be coming
back from administrative leave.
"The officer was cleared," Hall said.
"The case will be likely to be closed in
the next few days, and the officer will
be able to return to work."
The administrative leave period gave
time for an internal DPS review, which
ruled the officer's actions justified. The
officer also received therapy for the
stress and traumatic experience of
killing a person. Officers can only
return to work when the prosecutor's
office is satisfied with its investigation,
Heatley said.
Heatley said the officer followed
standard procedure.
"The officer did what he was trained
to do," said Heatley, adding that stan-
dard procedures will not be changed
anytime soon. "We will review the poli-
cies and procedures to see if they are
good enough. There is always room for
change, but I can not think of what
changes the officer could have done to
alter the situation. The officer followed
procedure:'
Heatley said officers receive exten-
sive firearms training.

PAUL TALANIAN/Dady
Rob Doane, a senior cadet and lieutenant colonel with the ROTC, rappels down the face of the
Dentistry School building yesterday afternoon as part of ROTC training exercises.

Proposed
bills aim

to curb
assaults
By Jeffrey Kosseff
D y Staff Reporter
an effort to assure increased pro-
tection against sexual assaults on state
campuses, state Rep. Laura Baird has
proposed a package of bills to encour-
age colleges and universities to crack
down on such crimes.
The bill, titled the Campus Sexual
Assault Information Act, instructs uni-
versity counseling centers to follow
specific guidelines when dealing with
crimes. If the universities do not
Uply with the act, they would be
excluded from programs such as the
Tuition Grant Program, the State
Competitive Scholarship Program and
the Tuition Differential Grant Program.
"The problem seems to arise when
the university attempts to protect ath-
letes," said Baird (D-Okemos).
The act requires public and private
universities to establish a sexual assault
licy in order to inform victims of
sible university and legal sanctions
that could be placed aainst the offend-
er.
The policy would also inform the
victim of available sexual assault edu-
cation programs and medical services.

Tlhe Campus Sexual
Assault Information Act
In order to participate in many finan-
cial aid programs, colleges and uni-
versities must develop a policy that:
* Informs rape victims of the univer-
sity's sexual assault programs
* Informs victims of sexual assault
education programs
N Informs victims of procedures for
filing a complaint within the universi-
ty and in the courts
Informs victim of legal rights
* Informs both parties of the result
of an interdisciplinary hearing
Establishes a written sexual
assault information policy
Sarah Heuser, interim director of the
Sexual Assault Prevention and
Awareness Center, said the bill would
not have a great impact on the
University.
"We already do most of those things
outlined in the bill because there is a
federal law that applies to all state uni-
versities and sets guidelines," Heuser
said.
The Headlee Amendment to the
Michigan constitution prohibits the
state legislature from interfering with
the governance of universities. Baird's
bill does not make it illegal for colleges
to disregard the act. If they do, they
lose funding for programs.
"It avoids the problem of the
Headlee Amendment," Baird said. "It
affects the funding sources."
The bill's main purpose, Baird said,
is to allow sexual assault victims to
press charges within both the universi-
ty and the court system. Some univer-
See ABUSE, Page 5

By Peter RomerFriedman
Daily Staff Reporter
The alcohol-related death of a Massachusetts
Institute of Technology first-year student Monday,
who was pledging Phi Gamma Delta fraternity, is cast-
ing ramifications on many college campuses.
Yesterday, the national chapter of Phi Gamma
Delta, popularly known as FIJI, said it plans to ban
alcohol from all of its 125 chapters by July 1, 2000.
Hoping to clean up its image, the national chapter is
stressing education, moderation and alcohol-free
behavior.
"Alcohol leads to a litany of social ills, such as date
rape, and needs to be done in moderation,' said
Douglas Dittrick, president of FIJI's national govern-
ing board. "We want to make a climate that can reduce
this."
Although FIJI administrators say they intend to ban
alcohol from local chapters, fraternity members at the
University say the ban may not work effectively.
"I'm of two minds,"said Jeff Hurlbert, president of the

University's FIJI chapter. "Anything that (curbs) under-
age drinking is good. It's against the law, but it's unrealis-
tic for one fraternity do this unless all of the others do it.
College is about experimenting with new things"
A member of Phi Delta Theta, one of two other
campus fraternities that plan to ban alcohol by July
2000, said drinking in fraternities is natural.
"There's absolutely nothing you can do about it,"
said LSA senior Jeff Goldberg, a member of Phi Delta
Theta. "If you put 26 guys in a house together, they're
going to booze."
Ken Tanner, president of the Interfraternity Council,
said banning alcohol won't lead to responsible drink-
ing.
"It's a policy that a lot of fraternities are introduc-
ing," Tanner said. "By banning the alcohol, they aren't
addressing issues of responsible drinking, they're try-
ing to eliminate (drinking), which is unrealistic."
In one month's time, two 18-year-old students have
died as a result of alcohol poisoning at fraternity hous-
es nationwide. The first came in late August at the

Louisiana State University campus and the second
occurred on Monday at MIT.
"The death (at MIT) should compel all students to
look at how they use and deal with alcohol;' said Bill
Martin, executive director of FIJ's national chapter.
"It should compel fraternities and sororities to see the
kind of behavior they allow, condone and encourage.
They should remain in control of themselves, rather
than being in positions where alcohol is controlling
them."
Buzz Portnoi, a Phi Delta Theta member, refuted
Martin's claim that more control is needed. He said
that fraternities exist as a way to supervise underage
drinking that inevitably occurs.
"We give supervision so that less trouble occurs,
Portnoi said. "Underage people drink, whether or not
an authority says it's okay. We act as an authority. If I
were a betting man, I'd say that if there's a frat, there's
bound to be a keg somewhere."
FIJI, Phi Delta Theta and Sigma Nu are all working
See FIJI, Page 5

FIJI plans to ban alcohol by 2000

New U' students
fit distinct profile

I

Who:
No. 6 Michigan (3-0) vs. Indiana (0-1 Big
Ten, 1-3 overall
Where:
Memorial Stadium (cap. 52,354)

Comparison shows 'U'
first-year students
unique among peers
By Ken Mazur
For the Daily
As the most recent class of the "lead-
ers and the best" fall into the rhythm of
their first semester at the.University, a
comparison with their peers around the
country reveals the University's first-
year students are unique among the
national class of 2001.
According to statistics from the
University's Admissions Office, acade-
mic records of students in Ann Arbor
continue to rank among the strongest of
the nation.
"I think the reputation of the
University attracts the best kids,' said
Marilyn McKinney, admissions office

national average score of 21. Sixty-four
percent of the University's incoming
class also ranked in the top 10 percent
of their high school graduating class.
The University also meets or beats
the national average in other areas.
Across the nation, minorities com-
prised 23.2 percent of first-year stu-
dents while making up 30 percent at the
University. Asian-American students
make up the majority of that figure,
with 11 percent.
First-year LSA student Jannette
Godbey said she was struck by the
diversity of the campus when she visit-
ed prior to making her final enrollment
decision.
"Walking around and hearing all
kinds of different languages was really
cool," Godbey said. "It seemed like no
matter what your background, you
could find a niche to fit into."

- '1

I

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