The UCSB Police Dept. hosted its first “Call of Duty vs. Cops” tournament last Thursday in the Santa Catalina dorm, pitting the hall’s residents against campus police members in a virtual fight to the death.
The event aimed to simultaneously educate first years about drinking and crime during Isla Vista’s renowned Halloween weekend and give officers a chance to connect with students on a personal level. Officers delivered a presentation outlining common criminal offenses that occur during Halloween and the subsequent punishments for violating them.
According to UCPD Corporal Darren Miller, the discussion provided safety tips for freshmen unfamiliar with the local celebration.
“This is a risk management presentation that goes over the dos and don’ts during Halloween weekend,” Miller said. “We see it as an I.V. 101 lecture.”
Residents formed six teams and played one round of Team Deathmatch in Call of Duty: Black Ops against the authorities. Once the rounds were over, the players with the highest scores fought against each other in a free-for-all.
First-year undeclared major Alberto Perez outgunned 35 other competitors to win the tournament and will receive a pre-ordered copy of Modern Warfare 3 from Police Chief Dustin Olson. The UCPD plans to host the tournament in each residence hall by the end of the year.
In addition to its educational purpose, Miller said such events are designed to give students weekend entertainment options outside Isla Vista’s party scene.
“Our goal is to give students an alternative to going out,” Miller said. “We hope this event helps eliminate the negative stigma attached to police officers and reaches out to residents.”