I just got this email about a robbery in the U-District:
On Thursday, May 1, 2008, shortly before 1:00 a.m., a female UW student was walking alone in the W-10 parking lot behind the Terry-Lander residence halls in west campus when she was approached from behind and knocked to the ground by two young men, one of whom grabbed her purse. The student was not injured. Both men immediately fled and entered a nearby waiting vehicle. Two UWPD officers on foot patrol in the vicinity were alerted by the victim’s shouts for help. The officers observed the suspects fleeing in their car. They broadcast over their radio information to other UWPD officers in vehicles who stopped the car and arrested all three occupants for robbery. The suspects were subsequently booked into the King County Jail and the Youth Services Center on investigation of second degree robbery.
The suspects in this crime are also being investigated as having been involved in similar crimes that occurred as recently as a week ago in the University District.
In order to decrease the chances of becoming a victim of crime, you should:
* Walk with friends, especially late at night or early morning hours
* Be aware of your environment and alert for possible danger.
* Remove yourself from potentially dangerous situations as soon as possible.
* Call 911 to report suspicious activity or persons to the police.
* Call Husky NightWalk: 206-685-WALK (9255) for a security guard escort to various locations on campus and within a one-mile radius off campus. The hours of operation for these uniformed guards are 6:00pm-2:00am, 7 days week.
Notice the last bullet above – the Husky NightWalk. I had no idea that this service existed! I wonder if they just set it up or if they’ve just done a poor job advertising it? I think the idea of having uniformed guards walking students around is a step in the right direction, but it totally won’t scale. The UW Police just flat out need to clean up the U-District. Deploy more nightly patrols, both on bike and in car, focus less on busting college students for partying and drinking, and continue to provide good services like the Husky NightWalk. Good services will be in much lower demand with a cleaner U-District, but they’ll still be available for worrisome students.