Answers are not forthcoming from members of the American River College student government about one of their own after an alleged incident “regarding substances” at a school trip last November.
After Jeremy Diefenbacher, president of the Associated Student Body Clubs and Events Board, and David Hylton, Senate director of activities, were sent home from a Los Angeles conference last November over alleged incidents “regarding substances,” Hylton admitted to wrongdoing.
Hylton said Thursday that the substance support group he joined after being sent home from Los Angeles for a marijuana related incident was “going well.”
Hylton said he paid back the student money used to send him to Los Angeles for the fall General Assembly for California Community College Student Senates.
Diefenbacher, on the other hand, has not admitted to wrongdoing, and is refusing to answer questions as to whether he has paid back his portion of the money.
Diefenbacher has denied repeated requests for interviews, saying Tuesday that he is “only available to discuss this semester.”
The possession or use of illegal drugs and the consumption of alcohol are prohibited during school trips by the Board of Governors of the California community college system, the American River College code of student conduct and the Los Rios Community College District.
Manuel Perez, dean of student development, said he would neither confirm nor deny that any incident took place.
Tamara Dunning, who is acting as ASB Student Senate president, said Thursday that Senate has no plans to censure Diefenbacher.
A censure is a procedure used by a legislative body to publicly disapprove of a member.
Dunning was asked why she had never mentioned Diefenbacher or the money during a Senate meeting.
“I haven’t said anything about (the war in) Darfur. That doesn’t mean I endorse it,” she said.
Dunning said students have the option to recall Diefenbacher. When asked how she would vote in such a recall, she said “I would vote in the election. I don’t know how.”
When asked if she wanted Diefenbacher out of the student government, she said “I didn’t say that.”
Dunning did say that the Senate bylaws committee is looking at reinstating a judiciary committee to handle members who break the rules.
“I think it is important that those individuals who violate code have to see the consequences,” said Dunning.
Cameron Weaver, Senate director of public relations, said that reinstating a judiciary committee is a response to Diefenbacher and Hylton being sent home.
Nevertheless, he doesn’t expect Senate to address Diefenbacher’s alleged transgression.
“I don’t feel comfortable bringing this event to light without a committee in place,” said Weaver. “Quite frankly, it already happened. We dropped the ball, which is why we’re trying to reinstate the committee.”
LeslieAnn Dameron, CAEB director of activities, had no comment on Diefenbacher’s actions.
“Maybe it’s a personal philosophy, but I think it’s important to look at what someone has done and not a single blip on their radar,” she said. “Regardless of the perception anyone has, we have moved forward.”