16.04 – Safety and Security at Public Events

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Scope: NMSU-Las Cruces

Source: ARP Chapter 16 | Safety and Risk Management

Responsible Executive: Chief of Staff

Responsible Administrator:

Last Updated: 01/09/2019


Consistent with the University Police Department’s mission (ARP 16.01), this rule provides the criteria and procedural guidance for the evaluation, approval and staffing of events held on the NMSU – Las Cruces campus that will be open to the general public.



  1. Event: “Event” means any planned or encouraged gathering or activity for a specific purpose.
    1. “Event” does not include: academic classes, athletic team practices and meetings, departmental meetings, and regular meetings of chartered student organizations.
    2. “Event” does not include promotions that invite the public, but are normally offered services, such as a promotional sale on clothing at a retail outlet or a special menu at an eatery, so long as normal seating or capacity limits are not exceeded and the promotion takes place solely within the confines of the normal location.
  2. Police Personnel: “Police Personnel” includes police officers, security officers, emergency service dispatchers, and other security-related staff employed by, or under the direction of, the university police department.
  3. Public Event: “Public Event” means one that is advertised to and/or open to the general public to attend, regardless of whether paid admission is required for entry.



Public Events will require staffing by Police Personnel.  Sponsors of Public Events must seek a safety/security evaluation and approval for their proposed event at least 10 business days (Monday-Friday, 8:00 am to 5:00 pm) prior to the event taking place. University Police Department staff will determine the Police Personnel staffing requirements. Reasonable effort will be made to work with event sponsor/promoters to achieve consensus; in the event of any dispute, the Chief of Police will make the final decision.

  1. Basic Criteria: The following basic criteria will be applied to determine the requisite Police Personnel for each Public Event:
    1. Alcohol sales: Public Events where alcohol is served or sold requires staffing by Police Personnel.  There must be at least one security or police officer at each alcohol sales/dispensing location, and one at each entrance/exit, regardless of crowd size.  Police Personnel staffing associated with the other factors are in addition to this requirement.
    2. Number of Attendees Exceeds 250: A Public Event with more than 250 attendees possible (based on venue size) or expected (based on ticketing) requires a minimum of one security officer or police officer.   Police Personnel staffing associated with the other factors are in addition to this requirement.
    3. Number of Attendees Exceeds 1,250: A Public Event with more than 1,250 attendees possible (based on venue size) or expected (based on ticketing) requires enhanced security measures, including but not limited to: fenced enclosures (if outdoors), pre-entry screening, bag searches, police officers patrolling parking lots. Police Personnel staffing associated with the other factors are in addition to this requirement.
  2. Additional Relevant Factors: In addition to the above, the following factors will be considered as part of the safety/security evaluation and approval for a proposed Public Event:
    1. The venue’s size and proximity to sensitive locations (e.g., housing or research facilities);
    2. The number and location of entrances/exits at the venue;
    3. Whether there is reserved seating or general admission ticketing;
    4. Time of day/night the event will be held;
    5. Amount of time needed to properly secure the venue before the event;
    6. The length of the event;
    7. Whether a fee will be charged for entry, goods, or services;
    8. The presence of large numbers of unattended minors (under the age of 18) and children;
    9. Presence, or lack thereof, of trained crowd managers;
    10. Whether street or parking lots closures and traffic control will be needed (e.g., for a parade, carnival, or race); and
    11. Presence or use of potentially dangerous materials or weapons as part of the event, including firearms, cannons, hazardous chemicals, explosives.
  3. Specific Security Requests from Event Sponsors: Additional security requests and requirements may be made by an event sponsor, who will bear the costs for such requests.  This includes traffic control, escorts, bodyguard or VIP protection details, use of magnetometers, pat-downs, etc.



  1. Non-University Event Sponsors: Non-university event sponsors are required to pay in advance of the event for facility use/rental (ARP 12.70) and for Police Personnel services required by the university.  The cost of police personnel is based on the rate structure published at nmsupolice.com/.  Estimates or price quotes for the use of facilities may be obtained in advance by contacting the appropriate coordinating entity (i.e., Campus Activities, Conference Services, or Pan Am Special Events), and payment should be made to the same.  Requests for waivers of the advance payment requirement will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.
  2. University Sponsors: University sponsors of Public Events will be billed for Police Personnel and services upon the conclusion of the event.  These may be billed directly to the sponsoring department, or through a coordinating/consolidating department like Pan Am Special Events, depending on the arrangements made in advance of the event.