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In a closed meeting, the trustees of the University of Utah discuss the "competence" of the police department and school officials after the murder of a student

The board of directors of The University of Utah had a closed door Friday competition "of the school's police department and its administrators after a student was shot dead on campus this week," said H. David Burton, chairman of the board .

"It certainly depends on everyone's competition," Burton told The Salt Lake Tribune after the 90-minute closed-door meeting ended. "What we must do, in any case, is to continue to improve the security of the university."

US trustees UU They analyzed a case timeline, even when McCluskey first spoke to the officers, a few days after she ended her month-long relationship with Rowland upon learning she had lied about her name, age and criminal history. Burton said they also talked about the police protocols and how they were promulgated in this case and heard reports from the campus police chief, Dale Brophy, and from the president of the United States, Ruth Watkins.

"This meeting was to give the board of directors up-to-date information about what had happened and what the university had done," Burton said.

The board closed the meeting, Burton said, because members were discussing personnel matters and said it included notes on "the competence of the board of directors, the university and the police department."

That approach was a contrast to the statements of Watkins and Brophy on Thursday, when they said a promised investigation would not focus on the behavior of individual officers. Rather, I would only review the protocols.

The Public and Public Meetings Act of Utah allows a public body to close a meeting to discuss staff, but says it should apply to "an individual," not to several departments and employees.

"It is not intended to be an excuse for public bodies to close meetings to discuss general competition issues," said media law attorney David Reymann. "I think this is extending the exception beyond the breaking point."

He said the law is intended to cover matters of private personnel, not entire departments; otherwise, "virtually anything they talk about being behind closed doors."

The spokesman of the EE. UU., Chris Nelson, said the school "supports the vote of its trustees to close its executive session this morning to discuss a matter of character and competence." The session was not recorded, he added.


The Salt Lake Tribune has submitted an application for public records for the minutes of the meeting.

In addition, a meeting notice was sent to reporters on Thursday afternoon, approximately 17 hours before the trustees were seated at 9 a.m. Friday The Law of Public Meetings requires a public notice of 24 hours and the publication of agendas for meetings of public bodies.

Eleven days before she was killed, McCluskey told detectives that Rowland, or possibly his friends, had sent emails and text messages on October 13 that threatened to reveal "compromising images" if he did not. send them $ 1,000. After transferring the money, McCluskey spoke with U. Police, who did not open a formal investigation until six days later.

The officers did not call the Rowland probation officer, who could have arrested him for violating the terms of his release. In fact, they never realized that Rowland was on parole

He had an extensive criminal history, going in and out of jail after a handful of probation violations. He was convicted of attempted forced sexual abuse and of attracting a child through the Internet in 2004, which put him on the sex offender registry

Brophy said during a conference Press on Thursday that there was a delay in the case because his detectives were busy with another job. Burton said that a person at the meeting questioned whether the department had sufficient resources

The general response, he said, was: "We can always use more."

Burton added: "If there are resources needed, we will provide them … There is no doubt … There are a lot of things that can be done to invest in security."

He said that among them he would make sure that officers have "enough tools" and the latest technology. It could also mean hiring more staff.

The US Department of Police UU It has 33 sworn police officers, which include the chief, four detectives, command personnel and patrol officers. Two additional security divisions, one for the main campus and one for hospitals, are comprised of civil guards

Most other trustees did not return calls on Friday. Board member Phil Clinger adjourned Burton. And the messages to John Nixon, the vice president of administrative services, were not returned either. Brophy, the campus police chief, informs Nixon.

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