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Students urged to continue focus on safety

October 23, 2009

Two separate incidents from the past week are leading UWPD, Offices of the Dean of Students and Madison Police Department to again urge students to keep a focus on personal safety.

In the first incident, a UW–Madison student was the victim of a strong-arm robbery around 9:25 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 22.

The student was walking in the 200 block of Lake Street, near Witte hall when she was confronted by a suspect who shook her, and demanded money. The suspect fled, and the victim was not injured. No suspect description is available.

In the second incident, a UW–Madison student was the victim of a sexual assault around 7 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 21 in the 2000 block of University Avenue.

The victim reported walking when a stranger ran up from behind her. He lifted up her skirt and touched her inappropriately. The woman turned around and the man fled. She says the entire incident lasted only a couple of seconds.

The suspect is described a male, 5’5″ to 5’6″, average build, medium-length brown or black hair wearing a green hooded sweatshirt, baggy blue jeans, and possibly white tennis shoes.

If you have information about either of these incidents, call UWPD at (608) 262-2957 or 264-COPS. You can also call or text Madison Crimestoppers at (608) 266-6014.

In general, MPD has been investigating opportunistic robberies or muggings occurring in the city of Madison. These crimes have generally taken place at night and have involved both people and businesses.

Dean of Students Lori Berquam and UWPD advise the following:

  • Watch out for your friends and neighbors, and take care of one another. Make sure everyone gets home safely.
  • Always walk with a group of friends, especially at night. Both men and women have been victims of recent robberies, which have been unprovoked and without a pattern.
  • If you intend to drink, do so in moderation so as not to put yourself in a position of increased risk.
  • Use your “radar” or common sense as your first defense. Your cell phone or iPod may lessen your ability to recognize or react to a dangerous situation.
  • Dial 911 for help or to report a crime. Do it immediately, even if you have been drinking.
  • Make use of SAFE Nighttime Services, (608) 262-5000.
  • Don’t let anyone into your residence hall who you don’t know.

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