TPD's "Red Tag Unit" cracks down on college parties - Tucson News Now

TPD's "Red Tag Unit" cracks down on college parties

(Kristin Haubrich/ (Kristin Haubrich/
TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) -

A specialized team within the Tucson Police Department spent the weekend cracking down on college parties, now that class is back in session at the University of Arizona.  TPD’s ‘Red Tag Unit’ was on the look-out for anyone hosting what they consider to be an ‘unruly gathering.’

If a residence is found in violation, TPD will apply a red sticker to the front window, but some UA students say the tag is a mark of shame.

“It makes us look like we’re bad kids and we’re causing trouble when actually we’re just a couple of college kids trying to have a good time,” UA Junior, Bobby Low said.
Low was one of many who got a surprise visit from TPD over the weekend. Their noise complaint resulted in a bright red sign getting slapped to the front window of their town home. TPD said Red Tag disturbances can be anything from excessive noise to serving alcohol to minors.

“I think probably at times it got a little too loud but I don’t think it warranted four red tags,” Low said.

Low said a four-unit housing complex that he lives in near Euclid was served four separate red tag citations even though their party was only in one of the units and each one has a separate lease.

“My house got red tagged.  That didn’t make any sense because I wasn’t home. I wasn’t there; no one was in my house,” Low said.

The tag must remain on the front window for six months. Some students worry, if they’re served another red tag, it could be grounds for eviction.

“You can’t have social gatherings anymore because any little noise complaint could be a second red tag. You’re just afraid of getting evicted,” UA Junior, Erik Chavez said.  

UAPD said the overall goal is to hold students accountable for off-campus behavior and to encourage them to be respectful citizens in our community.

“It was really bad for awhile. Like two ‘o clock in the morning. I never like to call the police but I’ve called the police a couple times,” said resident, Jim Jones.

The students that were issued the four red tags, now plan to take legal action. Tucson News Now reached out to TPD to see how many red tags were issued over the weekend, but they were not able to provide numbers on Sunday night. 

The Red Tag Unit plans to be out every Saturday in September.

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