Theft at University Village, subsequent arrest at Lane Center illustrate public safety protocol

Feb. 23, 2015

Eleanor Skelton
eskelton@uccs.edu

UCCS notified students and staff at 3:16 p.m. on Feb. 18 that a theft had occurred in the University Village Shopping Center, explaining that the suspect was last seen entering the Lane Center.

At 3:38 p.m., the system issued a second alert saying the situation had been resolved and the suspect was in custody.

“The 911 call went to the Colorado Springs Police Department. We monitor that police channel, and their dispatch notified officers of the theft, and our officers also responded to the call,” said executive director of Public Safety Brian McPike in an email.

McPike explained that the shopping center falls within the UCCS Police Department’s Inter Governmental Agreement area, granting UCCS police enforcement authority.

CSPD dispatch notified responding officers that the suspect fled across North Nevada Avenue and entered the Lane Center, McPike explained.

“UCCS PD and CSPD officers responded to the Lane Center, and a search of the building was conducted,” McPike said. “The suspect was found and placed into custody without incident by UCCS PD and CSPD officers.”

The population visiting UCCS is changing as the campus grows and the surrounding area is developed, said McPike.

“We are an open campus, meaning that anybody is welcome on our campus during normal business hours and we love people coming up to the campus and experiencing what we have to offer,” McPike previously said regarding broken windows in the Feb. 16 issue of The Scribe.

“It’s past those hours that we really get concerned.”

Anyone disrupting normal campus operations can be forcibly removed.

He said homeless people coming to the campus has increased, but was unsure of exact numbers because he believes it is still low.

“As the urban renewal continues on the north side, with all the expansion of … the North Nevada corridor, we’re seeing more and more of the homeless population end up in this area,” he explained.

“We do a great job, I believe, of finding them quickly and helping them. We don’t want to just tell them to
go away, we want to make sure why are you here and how can we help you and get resources for them.”

McPike was not able to discuss patrol schedules and when they assist custodians in locking the buildings at night. He expects increased cases and service calls to continue in the next two weeks as the IGA with CSPD is finalized, expanding their jurisdiction at off-campus locations such as the Lodges.

McPike reiterated the importance of safety as the highest priority.

Students and faculty can sign up for UCCS Alerts for no charge at http://alerts.uccs.edu.