Campus police providing safe routes, rides after recent crimes

As many college students enjoy a night out on the town, they're also on alert following a string of robberies near two campuses.

In the last three weeks, WKYT has been tracking robberies in Lexington, targeting college students. Three happened around the UK campus, a fourth near Transylvania.

With three crime bulletins issued this month, University of Kentucky police officers want students to know how to stay safe on campus. They are reminding them of the options they provide, including safe rides and escorts throughout the school year.

Four students this month have been victim to robberies near local campuses, one of those robberies also involved a sexual assault.  At the University of Kentucky, WKYT is learning that students know their options when it comes to safety.

"I just stay in the lighted areas, there's the whole Cat paws, the thing around campus that those are the lighted areas.  Try to stay in groups," explains freshman Bill Sheehy.

Freshman Brenda Alvarez explained one program available during weekday evenings, "SAFECATS, we can call and they'll come pick us up.  We've got emergency telephones.  If the light's green then we know that they're listening, they'll be coming to pick us up."

University of Kentucky Police Chief Joe Monroe oversees several programs that provide students with a safe ride or a safe escort.

"You can get a ride from one of the officers or have them escort you back and forth where you need to on campus.  You also have the option of using one of the parking transportation bus services on demand, and then SGA has whats called the Cats Cruiser," said Chief Monroe.

Students recommend if walking at night, to stay in or near groups and on well-lit paths.

"Even if I'm out with other people, I'm always really aware of my surroundings, I'm always looking up, I'm never looking down.  I want to make sure I notice every thing around me," said UK student Danielle Beam.

The Cats Cruiser runs on weekends. SAFECATS is a service ROTC students provide on week nights to all University of Kentucky students.  

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