With a number of robberies in Morgantown over the last several weeks, West Virginia University Police offer these tips to keep students out of harm’s way in those situations.

  • Make sure that you have a peephole on your front door to visualize the entrance to your apartment or home in any situation, not just a robbery situation.
  • Make sure there is a light outside your door to illuminate the area of the entrance to your apartment or home to make it easier to visualize a potential threat.
  • Make sure to have a sturdy lock, preferably a dead bolt, on all doors in your apartment or house that lead to the outside.

If your off-campus apartment or house is not equipped with these, contact your landlord and request these necessary safety precautions be taken.

University Police Chief Bob Roberts notes that some of these off-campus robberies may be related to the sale or possession of drugs.

Overall, however, there has been a decrease in Morgantown-area robberies this year, according to Morgantown Police statistics. In 2013, there were 34 robberies in the Morgantown area. So far in 2014, data available shows there have been 21, Roberts said.

If you are concerned that a robbery threat exists, Roberts advised calling 911 immediately. In addition, he offered the following tips for personal safety:

  • If possible, always note the description of the people attempting to rob you: height, weight, hair, skin color, facial hair, scars, tattoos, pants, shirt, jacket, shoes, etc., and alert police as soon as possible. Quick reporting and a good description may give the police the information needed to apprehend the suspect.
  • If you are approached or attacked, get away as quickly as possible and get help. Don’t stay and fight.
  • If you are the victim of a robbery, follow the instructions of the robber. Never do anything or take any action that may increase your risk of being a victim of physical violence.
  • Store valuables in a safe, hard to find location (like a safe). Remember that the motive in most robberies is to steal, and once the perpetrators have what they want, they will leave. Comply with their requests and remember that money, jewelry and other valuables can be replaced.

Additional safety tips for incidents other than robberies can be found at http://police.wvu.edu/.

If you are suspicious of a threat to your personal safety or the safety of others, you can use the LiveSafe App to alert police. For more information and to download the app for Apple and Android devices, visit: http://police.wvu.edu/special-services/livesafe.

WVU also sends out a text alert to warn those subscribed to the service of dangerous situations. If you do not receive WVU text alerts, visit: http://emergency.wvu.edu/alert/.

For the latest updates on emergency situations, you can follow @WVUToday and @WVUPD on Twitter.



CONTACT: University Police

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