Police Blotter

Campus police respond to potential fire and dorm drug bust

Lea Kopke

More stories from Lea Kopke


Photo by Submitted

The following information was obtained from UW-Eau Claire Police Department records.

Troubling toast

At 10:55 a.m. on Nov. 9, a campus officer reported to The Priory in response to an activated fire alarm. Members of the Township Fire Department also reported to the building.

Once on location, the officer saw the Children’s Nature Academy had already been evacuated. He entered the building with the academy’s director while the alarm was fully activated. The panel stated “smoke room 105.”

While this was not the location of the academy’s kitchen, the officer first looked there and could detect the odor of burnt food. He located slightly charred hamburger, but did not see other signs of smoke or fire. He then silenced the alarm and waited ten minutes before resetting it.

At this point, occupants were let back into the building. The officer then spoke with the Township Fire Department personnel, who had inspected the resident hall section of the building. A male told the personnel he had been attempting to cook toast near room 105 when it began to burn. He said the fire alarm activated shortly after the toast began to burn.

The Township Fire Department personnel did not locate other signs of smoke or fire.

After speaking with the Township Fire personnel, the officer reset the fire alarm system for the building. Once the panel stated “normal,” the Township Fire personnel cleared from the area.

After speaking with employees of Commonweal Development, who had just arrived, the officer cleared from the building.

Febreze facade

At approximately 8:18 p.m. on Nov. 6, a campus officer was dispatched to Bridgman Hall in response to a drug case. Upon arrival, a resident assistant notified the officer that she had smelled marijuana on one of the floors, but could not pinpoint which of two rooms the smell was coming from.

The officer went to the location the RA had given and, after smelling the first door frame, could not detect the odor of marijuana. Upon smelling the second door frame, the officer immediately detected a strong odor of marijuana.

In addition to the sound of a television and people’s voices, the officer could hear an occupant spray something from an aerosol can. The officer knocked on the door and could instantly hear shuffling from within the room.

After knocking a second time, a male subject answered the door. The subject identified himself as a resident of the room and told the officer his friend was also inside the room. The officer asked for consent to enter the room, which the subject gave.

Upon questioning, the subject admitted to smoking marijuana from an electronic vaporizer. The subject said he and his friend has smoked approximately 35 minutes prior to the officer knocking. When asked about the noise of the aerosol can, the subject said he sprayed Febreeze in an attempt to mask the smell of the marijuana.

After the officer asked where the marijuana was being stored, the subject retrieved a small baggie of marijuana and a gray PAX 2 electronic vaporizer. He told the officer he had no other drugs or drug-related paraphernalia within the room.

The officer received verbal consent to search the room from the subject. He then conducted a search of the subject’s portion of the room, but was unable to locate any items of interest.

After conducting a records check the officer found both individuals to be without warrants and without any prior drug-related offenses. He also completed an Eau Claire County Proxy form for each subject. Based on its results, the officer told the two they were both eligible for the Eau Claire County Diversion Program.

Both individuals agreed to participate in the program, so the officer helped them to sign the agreement form. After confirming the subjects had no further questions, the officer took custody of the drug-related items and transported them to the UW-Eau Claire Police Department for processing.

Kopke can be reached at [email protected]