Increased drug trafficking creates more crime
By Jacob King
On Friday, Oct. 30, a UF student was approached on campus by a man who possessed a knife and demanded money.
Brandon Morin, sophomore equestrian major, was the victim in the situation. Morin said he had been walking to his car from Morey residence hall around 9:45 p.m. Morin says the suspect had appeared out of nowhere.
“I heard a bicycle come at me, I turned around, this black guy with a knife was asking for money,” said Morin.
Morin, frightened in the situation, said he was shocked that the crime occurred so early in the night, and close to campus. Even more shocking to Morin was the demeanor of the suspect.
“He told me not to lie to him,” said Morin. “(After the robbery) he thanked me.”
According to Steven Baum, captain of security and safety, these incidents are nothing new to this year and nothing to take lightly.
“There’s been some of these small robberies around town,” said Baum. “These guys are getting so aggressive, this can happen in the middle of the day.”
The suspect was not identified because of his quick exit from campus. Although he committed a crime, searching for the suspect is out of UF security’s hands.
“Once the guy rides away on campus, he is no longer a threat to us,” said Matthew Bruskotter, assistant dean of environmental, safety, security and emergency management.
Even though UF security won’t be pursuing the suspect, Baum said that they accommodate to threatening situations such as this one.
“We are trying to increase our presence everywhere on campus,” said Baum. “Just trying to be at the right place, at the right time, is the challenge.”
Bruskotter said how this is a situation to take seriously, but fortunately incidents like these are “pretty rare.”
Dave Emsweller, vice president of student affairs, sent out a mass email to students about the incident, along with offering a connection between the robberies and a drug problem in Findlay.
“Crimes of opportunity increase when there’s an increase of drug use,” said Bruskotter.
Bruskotter and Baum said how keeping in contact with Findlay police assist in the prevention of crimes, as well as the conversion to a hybrid security system.
“We believe in communicating with Findlay police,” said Baum.
The aftermath of the incident consisted of messages alerting students about keeping cautious and aware.
“Don’t go by yourself,” said Baum. “Every place you are, you could be a victim.”
Morin said how this experience has taught him to be alert when by himself and to pay attention to his surroundings.
“I’m definitely more aware,” said Morin. “I definitely will think twice before going out at night by myself, don’t think it can’t happen to you- it definitely can.”