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Crime reignites emphasis on campus safety

Tyler Hoffman

Issue date: 10/29/10 Section: News
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With recent bank robberies close to campus and muggings on campus, the CWRU police department has come under increased scrutiny. CWRU police commander Vincent Johnstone emphasized that students should be using security resources, especially at night.
With recent bank robberies close to campus and muggings on campus, the CWRU police department has come under increased scrutiny. CWRU police commander Vincent Johnstone emphasized that students should be using security resources, especially at night.
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The week of Oct. 10 proved especially unusual for the entire campus community. Throughout the week, a plethora of email security alerts arrived in the inboxes of university students, faculty, and staff: a total of three bank robberies and three robberies of students occurred. Just prior to this particular week, a student was also assaulted on East 115th Street.

Except for the assault, the Case Western Reserve University Police Department reported that all suspects have since been arrested for all of the bank and student robberies. Addressing the assault, CWRU police chief Art Hardee said that the suspects have not yet been captured. However, the department has submitted camera footage from East 115th to another department for further analysis and enhancement.

Hardee noted that the three bank robberies did not occur on university property, and that one of his officers participated in the arrest of a bank robbery suspect. He also said that the suspects who committed the robberies against students were captured right away.

The frequency of crime so close to campus has heightened students' vigilance and has led to discussion in the Undergraduate Student Government general assembly as well as within the State of the University address.

"We are here 24/7 and we never stop patrols or dispatch services," CWRU police commander Vincent Johnstone said.

Though students, faculty, and staff observe uniformed police officers on a daily basis, the university police department also has a collection of officers that dress in plain clothes. "We have three patrol officers that dress in plain clothes attire [and] they are not definable as a security of police officer," Johnstone explained. "They go to KSL, areas of high crime, and the south quad of campus," he added.
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