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Campus crime rates down
Chevonne Forgey
Antelope Staff

Maybe it’s the economy? Crime rates on campus are down this fall.

Students could be more involved with their studies and less involved in the partying because the campus crime rate has continually decreased over the last four years.

In the first two weeks of classes, UNK campus police have had only a handful of traffic violations, four liquor violations, three disturbance/harassment calls and one DUI, as reported by the UNK Police public safety call list.
Sheila Scott, UNK Police Services Office Manager said, “We don’t really have much of a hassle on this campus. There are no particular problem areas and the weekly reports of crimes and mischief are minimal even at the beginning of a new year.”

The decreased crime rate could reflect increased security. Since the 2005 academic year, the campus security has increased. Today the campus has more programs and safety initiatives to help prevent crimes to create a safe campus. There are also seven full-time police officers and three certified part-time police officers on the UNK campus.

Scott said students need to be aware that these campus police officers are actual police officers. “They can arrest and will arrest if needed,” she said.

Scott said students need to be smart about their actions and protect their belongings, be aware at  all times of favorite targets: textbooks, bikes, I-pods and other personal belongings that can be turned into ready cash.

She said during the end of the school semester especially, textbooks seem to come up missing, and thieves try to cash in on other’s books. “It’s not uncommon for students to come into the office and report missing books or personal belongings.”

To help identify and protect textbooks, Scott offered the following advice, “When it comes to identifying your textbooks you need to be unique, create a special marking or choose your favorite number and mark that page in every book of yours. In fact, you can use your birthday for example. If it’s June 10, 1980, then go to the 80th page in the book to mark the year you were born, highlight six sentences down to represent your birthday month and then highlight the tenth word in that line to mark your birthday day. It’s a bulletproof way to identify your books, especially during times when textbook thefts arise. It’s also something you won’t forget.”

UNK police services have also initiated several crime preventative programs to assist students.

The Safe Walk Program is designed to provide a friendly escort with a trained Community Service Officer (CSO) to a safe destination anywhere on campus and up to two blocks off campus in any direction. Any student, employee or visitor who feels uncomfortable walking on campus can dial 308-224-0853 or 308-236-2488.

SHARP (Sexual Harassment Assault Rape Prevention) offers training to university affiliated women at no cost covering topics such as victim awareness, signs of a predator and risk reduction. SHARP provides hands on training of self-defense techniques and options. This program is available once in the fall and once in the semester or upon request. Students can register for the class by contacting Officer Susan Frerichs at frerichssm@unk.edu or at 308-865-8517.

There are also 10 emergency phones located across campus that link directly to 911 in cases of emergencies.

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