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'See something, say something' key to campus safety

A myriad of policies, procedures and policing are in place at Lamar University with one goal: a safe campus environment for students, faculty, staff and visitors.

Ranging from high-tech camera systems to professional policing, creating a safe campus has many facets. Central to success, police say, is an active awareness by everyone.

MyPD app availablePreventing crime depends on the vigilance of everyone on campus. “If you see something, say something. It’s vital that all members of the campus community act quickly and responsibly if they hear or see something that is out of the ordinary,” said Police Chief Hector Flores. “Don’t assume someone else will call.”

LUPD’s policing include vehicle, bicycle, and foot patrolling, as well as Campus Safety Officers (CSOs) who assist with routine tasks like building security and serve as additional eyes on campus.

“Even with more officers on patrol, it is essential that everyone be aware for their own personal safety,” Flores said. “Keeping your full attention on that small screen in your hands, or wearing earphones, could make you a target of opportunity to someone with bad intentions. Walking with confidence and keeping alert to what’s around you is the smart thing to do.”

LUPD publishes risk reduction tips that include basic things like securing belongings out of sight in vehicles, always locking residence hall doors, securing lower windows. Walking or jogging in groups, avoiding isolated or dark areas, and knowing the locations of emergency (blue light) phones on campus are also a good idea.

 “Awareness is key to keeping LU a safe campus,” Flores said. “Sometimes people hesitate to get involved, but really all it takes is a phone call. When someone reports suspicious persons, vehicles or activities, we respond immediately and check things out. It may be nothing at all, but it also could be the call that stops something bad from happening.”

“I’d suggest everyone put LUPD’s number in their phone or download the MyPD app so you don’t have to go searching for the number,” Flores said. The LUPD dispatch number is (409) 880-8311.  The free MyPD App for iPhone or Android is available online and provides emergency numbers, LU’s shuttle service, crime prevention tips and more at the users fingertips. For students living near the campus, LU provides a shuttle service and its real-time location can be tracked on the MyPD app.

LUPD can also be reached by text at (409) 241-8002 and be found on Facebook and Twitter. In case of emergency, dial 8311 from any campus phone to get to the Lamar Police. Calling 911 is less efficient since they will redirect you to the campus police anyway. If you do need to dial 911 from campus, you do not need to dial 9 to get out.

For more information, contact the LUPD at (409) 880-8307.