Two similar robberies have police upping patrols

Photo credit: Liesje Powers

By Kalyn Story | Staff Writer

Baylor police have increased patrols and staffing since a robbery was reported on campus Saturday night, according to Lori Fogleman, assistant vice president for Baylor media communications .

Baylor has alerted students to two robberies reported on or near campus in the past several days. The first robbery occurred on campus in parking lot 51 around 11 p.m. on Saturday.

“The victim told police he was robbed by a male who displayed a handgun,” an alert sent to students and staff via email on Sunday morning reported.

The email also stated that the victim had entered his vehicle and was starting to back out of the parking space when a black “sports car” with tinted windows pulled in behind the victim’s car and blocked it from leaving. The passenger in the suspect’s vehicle walked up to the victim’s car, opened the car door and demanded money.

The email described the suspect as a black male, 30-35 years old, 6’1” and wearing all-black clothing, including a black hoodie.

“Baylor police are actively investigating the robbery that occurred on Saturday night, and they also are working diligently with Waco police on [Tuesday’s] incident that occurred off campus,” Fogleman said.

Around 10 p.m. on Tuesday, a victim called the Baylor Police Department to report a robbery that occurred off-campus in the 1700 block of S. Fifth Street, near 7th and James Baptist Church.

Baylor sent an email alert Tuesday night informing students of the incident. The email said the victim reported walking north on S. Fifth Street, when a black “sports car” with tinted windows stopped in the street adjacent to the victim. The passenger in the suspect’s vehicle walked up to the victim and demanded money.

The email described the suspect as a black male, 6’2” and wearing a heavy black jacket with a black beanie.

Because this robbery was reported to have happened off-campus, it is being handled by the Waco Police Department. Sgt. W. Patrick Swanton, spokesman for the Waco Police Department, said Thursday afternoon that no arrests have been made.

“We are cooperating and working together with the Baylor Police Department to see if in fact the two robberies are related,” Swanton said. “Considering the proximity and similar nature and description of the suspect and incidents, there is a significant possibility that they are related, but we won’t know until we make an arrest.”

Fogleman stressed the importance of downloading the Rave Guardian app, which will allow students to quickly contact university police by phone call or text in an emergency.

“We continue to encourage students to not travel alone, if that’s possible, that there is safety in numbers,” Fogleman said. “If students, faculty or staff are alone on campus at night, we encourage them to call the Baylor Police Department at 254-710-2222, and they will provide a security escort on campus.”

She also highlighted Baylor’s 80 emergency call boxes located across the campus and more than 120 emergency telephones, which are located in all building elevators.

“These phones are provided as an immediate means of communication to the Baylor police dispatcher during an emergency, and Baylor police always respond to those calls,” Fogleman said.

She also asked students to make sure they are aware of the physical location of the Baylor Police Department, which is on the first floor of the Speight Parking Garage.

“Most importantly, if any student, faculty or staff member sees suspicious activity, no matter how innocuous it may seem, it is wise to trust your instincts and a good idea to contact our police department at 254-710-2222,” Fogleman said.