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New York State University Police


New York State University Police

New York State University Police
Common name State University Police
Abbreviation NYSUP
Patch of the New York State University Police.
Motto Protecting New York's Future
Agency overview
Formed 1999
Legal personality Governmental: Government agency
Jurisdictional structure
Operations jurisdiction* State of New York, USA
Legal jurisdiction New York
General nature
Specialist jurisdiction Buildings and lands occupied or explicitly controlled by the educational institution and the institution's personnel, and public entering the buildings and immediate precincts of the institution.
Operational structure
Police Officers Approx. 600
Agency executive R. Bruce McBride, Commissioner of New York State University Police
Parent agency State University of New York
Stations 28
* Divisional agency: Division of the country, over which the agency has usual operational jurisdiction.

The New York State University Police (NYSUP) is the law enforcement agency of the State University of New York (SUNY) system. Approximately 600 uniformed officers and investigators, as well as sixty-four chiefs, serve the 28 state college and university campuses throughout the state.[1]

State University Police Officers are charged with crime detection and prevention, in addition to the enforcement of state and local laws, rules, and regulations. As part of the unit's prevention activities, officers speak on topics such as sexual assault, drugs, crime prevention and traffic safety. Officers are responsible for developing and maintaining a positive relationship with students, faculty, and staff in order to ensure safety and facilitate cooperation within the campus community.


The New York State University Police was formed in response to growing unrest in the SUNY system during the mid-1960s. Demonstrations and protests against the Vietnam War, the growing drug use, questioning authority and various political movements and demonstrations contributed to the formation of today's State University Police. Several incidents during the 1990s emphasized the need for a full service police agency. These included a hostage-taking in a SUNY Albany lecture hall by a deranged gunman,[2] the "Bike Path Rapist" who killed a female student at the University at Buffalo[3] and the suspicious circumstances regarding the disappearance of a SUNY Albany student while on campus.[4] These and other incidents moved the Governor and Legislature to create the New York State University Police in 1999. Officers have the powers of arrest, issue uniform traffic tickets, and enforce New York State laws.


  • 1971 - First Campus Security Officer exam was given
  • 1972 - Security and Peace Officers were included in the Education Law
  • 1974 - First arming program conducted at S.U.N.Y. Albany
  • 1975 - Task force for Public Safety recommends move from Education Law to Penal Law
  • 1980 - The omnibus Peace Officer Bill was signed putting Public Safety Officer/University Police in the Criminal Procedure Law.
  • 1986 - Dr. Bruce McBride appointed as Director of Public Safety
  • 1995 - New York State University Police name proposed
  • 1999 - January 1: University Public Safety officers gain Police Officer status (State University Police Officers now use police officer title and mirror the New York State Police.) [5]

Operational overview

Officers receive their official powers through Education Law and Criminal Procedure law. These authorize a State University Police Officer to make warrantless arrests based on probable cause, to use appropriate force in making an arrest, to issue uniform appearance tickets and traffic summons and to execute arrest and bench warrants. For minor offenses, officers can use discretion to refer students to the college judicial board instead of pursuing an arrest. Officers have the option of referring arrested students to the college judiciary system.

Officers are assigned to fixed or rotating shifts involving patrol assignments or dispatch/desk posts.[6]

Unlike the New York State Park Police, each SUNY campus operates as its own police department. Despite claims that centralization would decrease costs and improve efficiency, the SUNY administration and state legislature have rejected centralization.

Pension system

As of 2013, the SUNY police is the only state police agency that does not participate in the police and fireman's pension system. As the force did not exist when the pension system was established for the other groups, SUNY officers remain outside the system.

SUNY Police bill

In 1999, the SUNY Police bill was signed. One clause requires each campus president to enter into a "mutual aid" agreement with adjoining police agencies. SUNY police support New York State troopers (together with town, city, and county police) during emergencies and calls for assistance.


While new trainees were once trained at the New York State Police Academy in Albany, New York, prospective officers are now trained at regional academies located in the area in which they are first stationed.

Training for new officers meets or exceeds the "New York State Department of Criminal Justice Standards for Police Officers". The "Police Officer Basic Course" includes training in:

  • Penal Law, Criminal Procedure Law, Vehicle and Traffic Law, Environmental Conservation Law and others.
  • Defensive Tactics
  • Domestic Violence
  • Drug and Alcohol Recognition and Enforcement
  • Emergency Vehicle Operation
  • Chemical Agents
  • Physical Training
  • Arrest Techniques and Process
  • Report Writing
  • Interviewing and Interrogating
  • Investigation Techniques
  • Patrol Tactics
  • Traffic and Felony Vehicle Stops
  • Critical Incident Management
  • Weapons of Mass Destruction
  • Emotionally Disturbed Persons
  • Computer Operations

After training each new officer completes a minimum twelve week on-the-job training supervised by a Field Training Officer from their respective campus.[7]

Specialized units

Depending on location and training, Officers can be selected for specialized units that allow the agency to better serve the community. Some of these units include:

  • Police Bike Patrol Unit
  • Firearms Training Unit
  • Emergency Response Team (SWAT)
  • Crime Prevention/Education Unit
  • K-9 Unit (Tracking, Narcotics and/or Explosive Detection)
  • Crime Scene Unit
  • Civil Disturbance Response Unit
  • Honor Guard
  • Executive Protection Unit
  • Rape Aggression Defense Class Instructor Unit[8]

The force includes a Criminal Investigations Unit, a "plainclothes" unit responsible for both criminal and non-criminal investigations. Criminal Investigators train in investigative topics, such as sexual assault, domestic violence, computer and "white-collar" crimes, homicide and evidence collection and preservation.[9]

Recent developments

In 2010, the Stony Brook force became the second in NYSUP to become an accredited law enforcement agency by the New York York state department of Criminal justice services.[10] The accreditation shows that the department exceeds the standards required to be a law enforcement agency in the state of New York. Fewer than half of the law enforcement agencies in New York meet accreditation requirements.

NYSUP union President James McCartney testified in 2007 before the state Senate Higher Education Committee[11] and, again in 2008, to the SUNY Board of Trustees.[12] His testimony discussed what he claimed to be a dysfunctional, decentralized command system and ongoing staffing, equipment, and training deficiencies. McCartney also expressed concern about the "top-heavy" UPD Chief staff, noting its sixty-five management positions, compared to a combined total of twenty-four across other state law enforcement agencies.


A 2007 investigative audit by the New York State Comptroller found that the majority of SUNY campuses had, in violation of the Federal Clery Act, underreported crimes and failed to disclose required safety and security policies. Noncompliant stations included University at Albany, University at Buffalo, Binghamton University, Stony Brook University, SUNY Downstate Medical, SUNY Brockport, SUNY Buffalo State College, SUNY Fredonia, SUNY Geneseo, SUNY New Paltz, SUNY Old Westbury, SUNY Optometry, SUNY Oneonta, SUNY Oswego, SUNY Plattsburgh, SUNY Potsdam, SUNY Purchase, SUNY Alfred State, SUNY Canton, SUNY Cobleskill, SUNY Delhi, SUNY Environmental and Forestry (ESF), SUNY Farmingdale State College, SUNY Maritime, SUNY Morrisville and the SUNY Institute of Technology (SUNYIT).

Campuses found underreporting crime statistics included Binghamton University, University at Buffalo, Stony Brook University, SUNY Downstate Medical Center, SUNY Brockport, SUNY Buffalo State College, SUNY Fredonia, SUNY Geneseo, SUNY New Paltz, SUNY Old Westbury, SUNY Oneonta, SUNY Potsdam, SUNY Alfred State, SUNY Canton, SUNY Cobleskill, SUNY Delhi, SUNY Farmingdale State College, SUNY Maritime, and SUNY Institute of Technology (SUNYIT). The audit noted that SUNY Stony Brook did not report 48% of the index crimes that occurred at the University. In particular, several sexual assaults had been labeled "investigations" and were not disclosed to the community, as was required by law.[13]

Following the arrest in 2009 of three SUNY Geneseo students in relation to the death of a nineteen year-old student,[14] it was revealed that the New York State Inspector General[15] was investigating the incident.[16] Investigators appeared to be focusing the accuracy of crime reporting and on allegations that the police administration was not notifying neighboring agencies of students engaging in off-campus criminal activity.

The audit of SUNY compliance with the Clery act was appealed because of complaints that "accounting tricks" were used to find fault with Annual Security Reports (ASR) by the Office of the State Comptroller. After much discussion and negotiation, OSC issued a formal letter that stated that any discrepancies reported in an earlier audit had been corrected by SUNY, and that campuses were substantially in compliance.

See also


  1. ^ "University Police Department". Stony Brook University. Stony Brook University. 2012. Retrieved 21 September 2012. 
  2. ^ James Dao (15 December 1994). "Gunman Terrorizes Students in Campus Siege". The New York Times. Retrieved 21 September 2012. 
  3. ^ Adam Hojnacki (1984–2012). "The Quarter-Century Case". Generation. Sub-Board I, Inc. Retrieved 21 September 2012. 
  4. ^
  5. ^ Stony Brook State University Police page
  6. ^ Cortland State University Police page
  7. ^
  8. ^
  9. ^ "University Police Department: Criminal Investigations Unit". University Police. University at Albany. 2012. Retrieved 26 September 2012. 
  10. ^ "Press Release". Stony Brook University. Stony Brook University. 8 December 2010. Retrieved 23 September 2012. 
  11. ^ Darson, Lauren (11 June 2007). "University campuses slow to beef up security". Legislative Gazette. The Legislative Gazette. 
  12. ^
  13. ^
  14. ^
  15. ^
  16. ^

External links

  • State University Police Albany Station SUNY University at Albany "UAlbany"
  • State University Police Alfred Station SUNY Alfred State College
  • State University Police Binghamton Station SUNY Binghamton University "BU"
  • State University Police Brockport Station SUNY State University College at Brockport
  • State University Police UB North and South Campus Station SUNY University at Buffalo "UB"
  • State University Police Buffalo State Station SUNY Buffalo State College
  • State University Police Canton Station SUNY College of Technology at Canton
  • State University Police Cobleskill Station SUNY College of Agriculture and Technology at Cobleskill
  • State University Police Cortland Station State University College at Cortland
  • State University Police Delhi Station SUNY College of Technology at Delhi
  • State University Police Downstate Medical Station SUNY Downstate Medical Center
  • State University Police ESF Syracuse Station SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry "ESF"
  • State University Police Farmingdale Station SUNY Farmingdale State College
  • State University Police Fredonia Station SUNY Fredonia State College
  • State University Police Geneseo Station SUNY State University College at Geneseo
  • State University Police Maritime (Throggs Neck, Manhattan) Station SUNY Maritime College
  • [1] SUNY Morrisville State College
  • State University Police New Paltz Station SUNY State University College at New Paltz
  • State University Police Old Westbury Station SUNY State University College at Old Westbury
  • State University Police Oneonta Station SUNY State University College at Oneonta
  • State University Police Oswego Station SUNY State University College at Oswego
  • State University Police Plattsburgh Station SUNY State University College at Plattsburgh
  • State University Police Potsdam Station SUNY State University College at Potsdam
  • State University Police Purchase Station SUNY Purchase College
  • State University Police Stony Brook Station SUNY Stony Brook University
  • State University Police SUNYIT (Utica) Station SUNY Institute of Technology (SUNYIT)
  • SUNY College of Optometry
  • SUNY UPSTATE Medical University
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