Student Claims Temple Police Officer Was Sleeping on the Job - NBC 10 Philadelphia

Student Claims Temple Police Officer Was Sleeping on the Job



    A Temple University student snatched a photo of what he claimed was a Temple officer sleeping on the job. NBC10's Keith Jones speaks to the student and confronts the officer in question. (Published Wednesday, March 26, 2014)

    As students and parents continue to criticize Temple University officials for their handling of a series of off-campus assaults, a picture has surfaced allegedly showing a Temple Police officer sleeping on the job.

    Ankit Patel, a Senior and Broadcasting Major at Temple, sent NBC10 a photo of what he claimed was a Temple Police officer sleeping inside his vehicle.

    Patel says he spotted the officer shortly before 7 p.m. sleeping inside a vehicle on Cecil B. Moore Avenue and 15th Street.

    "I walked past him and saw it," Patel said. "So I walked around to make sure he was sleeping."

    Patel also sent the photo to Temple Police who told the student that the officer would be "pulled from duty while investigated."

    While NBC10's Keith Jones spoke with Patel, he spotted a Temple officer who appeared to be the same one who was allegedly caught sleeping. Jones caught up to the man who refused to comment.

    NBC10 later reached out to Ray Betzner, the Assistant Vice President of Communications at Temple.

    "The officer has been pulled from duty for the night, pending an investigation," Betzner said. "If true, this behavior is not indicative of the behavior we expect from a Temple police officer, and full action will be taken." 

    The photo was tweeted the same day police arrested a 15-year-old girl for allegedly assaulting a 19-year-old Temple University student with a brick. Four other teens, a 17-year-old, two 15-year-olds and a 14-year-old, were also taken into custody in relation to the assault which took place on Friday. Detectives say these teens may also face charges soon.

    A 20-year-old Temple student also told NBC10 that she was attacked by several girls just 15 minutes before the brick attack. Police also said the girls were responsible for a third attack at 17th and Cecil B. Moore Streets in which they allegedly assaulted another woman who is a Temple University student.

    Following’s coverage of the attack, Temple University came under fire from students and parents.  A number of students said they were frustrated the university did not notify them about the off-campus assaults.

    A Temple spokesperson said the university's westerly jurisdiction ends at 16th Street and that the school pays the Philadelphia Police Department $1 million a year to enhance security in the neighborhoods around campus. Officials say off-campus is Philadelphia Police's territory.

    Monday night, Temple University sent out a campus-wide email explaining why they did not alert the university community about the attacks.

    In the message, university officials explained that they were not made aware of the brick attack until hours after it happened and that the school's "TU Alert" system is reserved for imminent dangers and threats, like bomb threats or an active shooter.

    Betzner also told the university has no immediate plans to review its notification procedures. He says that could come at the end of the semester when officials typically review all university procedures.

    Tuesday night, Temple University officials sent a message to students informing them that they were adding patrols off-campus.

    "Beginning immediately, we plan to increase our bike patrol presence in the area west of campus; provide additional resources from the Philadelphia Police Department to patrol off campus areas particularly later in the evening; when necessary, provide additional resources from the Pennsylvania State Police to assist in patrolling area and increase the use of Temple police undercover officers to monitor for suspicious behavior," Temple officials said.