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Why universities turn to the police to end student protests − and why that can spiral out of control

Posted on AllSides May 3rd, 2024
From The Left
Kena Betancur/AFP via Getty Images

The first documented appearance of a sworn police officer patrolling a college campus was in 1894 at Yale University.

Generally, there have been two approaches to police on university or college campuses. Initially, university administrators asked local police to respond to issues with antiwar demonstrators during the Vietnam War and with women’s rights protests in the 1960s. When many of those encounters did not go very well for anyone, campus police departments were created. Today, about two-thirds of universities and colleges – mainly public ones, like University of California, Los Angeles – have their...

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