MPD seeks information on Vilas Avenue armed robbery

September 10, 2013

Madison police are investigating the armed robbery of three male UW students in the 1200 block of Vilas Avenue around 11:15 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 8.

According to MPD, the men were in their apartment when the suspects entered. One suspect displayed a black semiautomatic handgun and ordered the victims to the ground. The suspects took a variety of electronics before leaving. The victims were not injured.

Detailed suspect information was not immediately available.

In a second recent incident at approximately 11:30 p.m. on Sept. 4 in the 1900 block of University Avenue, two UW students were victims of an armed robbery.  The two suspects, one armed with a gun, demanded their personal property. The victims complied, and the suspects ran off.  

In that case, suspects are described as: a male, black, 18-20 years old, 5’ 9”, 140-150 pounds, wearing dark clothes; and a male, black, 18-20 years old, 5’ 11”, 160 pounds, wearing dark clothes. It is not known whether the incidents are related.

Anyone with information on these incidents, or any other recent crime, can call Madison Area Crime Stoppers at 608-266-6014. Callers can remain anonymous.

The UW Police Department is reminding students of University Housing and off-campus houses and apartments to keep a focus on personal safety, even while indoors. In general, the following common-sense tips are suggested:

For off-campus residences:

  • Never resist giving up your property when you’re confronted by an individual with a weapon.
  • Keep your windows and doors locked both when your residence is occupied and unoccupied.
  • Don’t buzz people you don’t know into the building.
  • Never prop open an exterior building door.
  • Report any safety concerns (non-working hallway or outside lights, locks, etc.) to your property owner or manager immediately.

In University Housing:

  • Never prop open a building door or allow access to a stranger. University Housing has installed security cameras and monitors in its high-rise buildings, along with exterior locking and monitoring systems that notify staff when doors are ajar or propped open.
  • Residents of University Housing are urged to keep their doors locked, especially when home or sleeping.
  • Be wary of people who don’t appear to belong in the area.
  • If you feel uncomfortable confronting a person who is following you into a residence hall, alert your hall staff, house fellow or UW Police Department (UWPD).
  • Do not open the door to someone who does not carry proper identification. University Housing custodial and maintenance staff members all wear identification tags with their photos and names.
  • Report any crime or suspicion of a crime at once. If UWPD is contacted within the first five minutes, police have a better chance of finding a suspect.