Police arrest former UW-Stevens Point student at Fox
By Kari Toland
photo by Kari Toland
City of Menasha Police arrest Jeffery Decker at UW-Fox Sept.19.
Jeffrey Decker, past editor and business journalist for The Forum, a UW-Marathon County publication of open discussion, was arrested on two separate occasions on UW-Fox Valley’s campus.
Decker’s arrests took place at a convocation meeting Sept. 1 and at a county board meeting in room 1706 on Sept. 19.
Decker was protesting what he believes is misuse of administrative power in the distribution of students’ segregated fees.
His concerns stem from incidents between Decker, UW-Stevens Point chancellor Bernie Patterson and other administrators at the four-year campus where Decker was enrolled.
“Chancellor Patterson divides and hijacks student power to control $10.5 million and forces each student to pay $1,500 in illegal fee increases over four years,” Decker said.
“We are not going to ignore the students, nor have we ever ignored students,” Patterson said in March 2011 article of The Forum.
Patterson declined to comment further because of pending court cases that could lead to additional legal action against Decker.
Decker has been protesting Stevens Point’s administrative practices for five years and has taken his story to numerous campuses.
He has been asked to leave several times by campus security and has since been banned from entering any of the UW campuses. Decker has been arrested and charged multiple times.
Decker, an Oshkosh resident, brought his cause to the UW-Fox campus because he lives in the area.
“I’m not an expert at what is going on at UW-Fox Valley [with segregated fees]…geography was the reason I came,” Decker said.
Decker’s first arrest at Fox occurred following his interruption of a Sept. 1 convocation meeting.
Rhys Kuzdas, UW-Fox Student Association (SA) president, and treasurer Dolly Schoenfeldt were at the meeting.
“Decker became very assertive, talking about corruption and nothing that pertained to the meeting,” Kuzdas said.
Decker returned to the Menasha campus 18 days later to protest allocation of segregated fees at a county board of trustees’ community meeting. Trustees were discussing the renovation of building 1655 and maintenance costs for the broiler room.
“He was asked to leave the campus. Mr. Decker refused and, after a period of time, Menasha Police Department (MPD) came to campus and removed him,” Jim Eagon, assistant campus dean for administrative services, said.
Four Menasha police officers removed Decker from the premises around 2 p.m. Decker was later released by authorities.
He returned to campus around 4 p.m. and approached Schoenfeldt in room 1218.
“[Decker] showed up in Jeff Kuepper’s office, shuffling papers and handing out his propaganda,” Schoenfeldt said.
Schoenfeldt remember seeing Decker on Sept. 1, but was not aware of his arrest two hours earlier.
Kuzdas wants students to know that decisions regarding segregated fees are in students’ hands.
“At UW-Fox, [students] have complete control the moment the students’ money comes in…we say how those dollars are spent,” Kuzdas said.
Kuzdas confirmed there is open communication between Student Association officers and UW-Fox administrators about segregated fees.
“We are lucky here at UW-Fox. We have a very productive relationship with administration when it comes to [segregated fees],” Kuzdas said.