WSU students caught partying to face more consequences

VIDEO: WSU students caught partying to face more consequences

It has been several weeks since Pullman police began ticketing Washington State University students for illegally gathering during the pandemic.

Officers stopped 20 parties and issued 22 citations. Chief Gary Jenkins says the number of parties appear to be dwindling by the day.

“We think we’re having an impact with this so we’re hoping to see COVID-19 numbers start going down,” he said.

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Whitman County was named one of the nation’s coronavirus “hotspots” after health officials say college parties lead to a drastic spike in COVID-19 cases. Students face a $250 fine for hosting an illegal gathering.

Tuesday, Pullman City Council unanimously passed an ordinance to fine anyone at the party, not just the host.

“When we show up and we cite the host, they start getting on their cell phones and start sending money to the host on Venmo to help pay for the fine,” Chief Jenkins explained.

Gov. Jay Inslee addressed similar concerns for other campuses in Washington as students move back for the fall semester.

“We cannot allow that to happen in other colleges in other cities. It’s just too dangerous to have those similar spikes,” the governor says, “the socialization that’s taking place in apartments and dorms is killing us.”