Film to show students how to avoid getting ‘Busted’

Brittany Moseley

Student Legal Services and Kent Interhall Council only need 45 minutes to show students how to avoid getting arrested.

Both groups are presenting the movie “Busted” at 8:30 tonight in the Kiva. It’s an instructional video that shows college students how to assert their constitutional rights in police confrontations. The video was created by the Flex Your Rights Foundation, and it’s narrated by Ira Glasser, former director of the American Civil Liberties Union.

The film addresses three situations that are most common for college students. Three students are pulled over for speeding and possession of marijuana; a student is approached on the street by police; and a group of students have a house party and the police show up. The movie portrays the wrong way to handle the situation and then the right way.

“When I first saw it, I thought that it did a very good job explaining the law – made sure it was very easy to understand,” said Jamison Offineer, paralegal for Student Legal Services.

The film demonstrates how to courteously and confidently refuse police searches and avoid self-incrimination, Offineer added in an e-mail.

Josh Kropko, vice president of Kent Interhall Council, saw the video during a Undergraduate Student Senate meeting, and after 15 minutes, he knew he had to show it to more people. He said with the mixed messages students receive from TV and their peers, they don’t know how to handle police encounters.

“You have to be able to assert yourself,” Kropko said. “It’s 99 percent maturity and 1 percent knowledge.”

Besides asserting their rights, the film also shows students how police officers act in certain situations.

“I thought that (the film) was a good depiction of the police officers and the way they intimidate,” Offineer said. He and Kropko both said students shouldn’t give into such tactics. For example, if pulled over, rolling the window down all the way shows the police officer you’re passive, Kropko said.

Although the tips in the movie can help students avoid getting arrested, the point of the film isn’t how to get away with illegal activity.

“The movie isn’t about tips on how not to caught with weed or how to drink in public,” Kropko said. “This is about how to protect yourself from wrongful violation of your rights.”

Carol Crimi, Student Legal Services attorney, said students can benefit from the movie because many don’t know their rights or when to use them.

“(Students) either think they aren’t entitled to assert these rights or don’t know how to assert them successfully,” Crimi said. “Right’s don’t mean anything unless people are educated about them.”

Crimi said Student Legal Services is looking into playing the video in First Year Colloquium. She also said USG suggested playing the video in the student center.

Even though some students will never be in the situations portrayed in the film, Crimi suggested everyone see it because it addresses an important topic.

“We are all citizens of America,” Crimi said. “These are important rights we hold by rights of citizenship.”

Contact room and board reporter Brittany Moseley at [email protected].