SOUTH BEND — College students, including many freshman, are preparing for the upcoming fall semester. As they return to campus, and many arrive on campus for the first time, CrimeStoppers asks college students to keep the following rules in mind.
Realize there is a risk of crime, even violent crime anywhere you go. Research crime rates and avoid areas where it’s high.
Be aware attackers can hide in your backseat, or even under the car. Have your keys ready. They can be used as a defensive weapon, too.
Consider carrying mace or pepper spray, and a personal alarm (available online). They can attach to your key ring.
Share your schedule with your family or close friends.
Study campus maps to plan the safest, most well-lit routes. Use the buddy system whenever you can to avoid walking alone.
Familiarize yourself with campus security offices and emergency phone locations.
When leaving campus, plan ahead for the safest transportation (taxi, designated driver). Many campuses offer shuttles.
Know that drugs and alcohol can increase your risk of becoming a victim. They’re involved in 90% of crimes to students.
Never leave your drink unattended or with a stranger. Date rape drugs are a danger, even sometimes to men.
If a party gets out of hand LEAVE.
Make sure your dorm room and hall entrances are locked, especially when you’re not there or at night when you’re sleeping.
Never prop a door open, or allow someone unknown to you follow you into a residence hall.
Keep valuables out of sight, and shades drawn at night.
Program an “emergency contact” into your phone. In the event you’re separated from it, police will know who to contact.
Be aware of your surroundings. Trust your instincts and retreat if it doesn’t feel right. Report any suspicious behavior to police or campus security.
For more information, visit www.MichianaCrimeStoppers.com or visit their Facebook page.