Come for the blue-light special, stay for the police hospitality.
VCU Police are hosting their first Robbery Prevention Week for VCU students, faculty and staff this week.
The event began Sept. 24 and will run through Oct. 1. VCU police will be in and around campus promoting awareness on the roles community members as well as officers play in robbery prevention.
“It’s just a good initiative,” said acting captain of patrol operations, Mike Berry. “Our goal has always been to educate, be visible and (suppress) robberies.”
The event will feature “blue-light specials” at locations that have high pedestrian traffic. Police cars will run their blue lights to draw in residents to hand out information and talk to the community about robbery prevention. Tables will also be at dorms and areas such as the library and the Commons with officers promoting the event.
The biggest crime at VCU is larceny, but for VCU Police the number one priority is robbery.
For the 2011-2012 academic year, VCU Police’s goal is to cut robberies by 25 percent. In the 2009-10 year there were 43 robberies and 33 the following year, according to VCU Police spokesperson Mike Porter.
“So far this academic year, our numbers (of robberies) are way low compared to last academic year, and we had cut them by 24 percent of the previous year,” O’Berry said.
VCU Police recommend staying in well-lit areas, using the escort service and staying in groups as ways to avoid robbery.
According to VCU Police, most robberies occur between 10 p.m. and 4 a.m., and avoiding going out in this time period can also help prevent robberies.
The event’s main focus is to get information to not only students but also local residents on ways to prevent robbery.
“We just don’t want you to get robbed,” O’Berry said. “It’s a needle in the hay stack compared to the number of students, but it is a reality.”