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Campus safety notice

Vice President for Student Affairs Ginger Ambler sent the following message to the campus community Jan. 24, 2011 - Ed.

Dear William & Mary Community,

I’m writing to inform you that one of our students was the victim of an armed robbery early this morning. The incident occurred at approximately 1 a.m. not far from the campus in the 700 block of Richmond Road near the corner of Dillard Street.  According to Williamsburg City Police, the student was walking south on Richmond Road when he was approached from behind by two individuals on bicycles. One of the suspects pushed the student into a bush, displayed a handgun and removed cash from the student’s wallet. Both suspects then left the scene and the student returned home and immediately called police.  Thankfully, the student was not physically injured in the incident. Staff members in the Dean of Students Office are reaching out to the student involved to provide him with additional support and resources.

According to police, the suspects were both wearing dark clothing and hooded sweatshirts pulled down over their eyes. They were both described as tall, approximately 6’0” to 6’2” in height. The suspect with the handgun was described as weighing approximately 220 to 250 pounds with a deep voice and southern accent. The race of the suspects is not known.   Local law enforcement officials have asked for any help we can give in apprehending the suspect(s).  Should you have information that may assist them, please call the Crime Line at 1-888-Lock-U-Up.

We think of the Williamsburg community as a safe place.  And relatively speaking, it is.  What happened early this morning, however, is an unfortunate reminder that even in a community as special as ours, crimes can and do occur.  There may be nothing we can do to fully insulate ourselves from the reality of crime in our world.  At the same time, this is a good time to remember that there are measures we can and should take to increase our level of personal safety.  First, please be aware of your surroundings, both on and off campus.  When venturing out after dark, it is helpful to travel with friends or call ESCORT (221-3293) for a safe walk/ride.  And, as the student in this case did, call the police immediately if something happens to you or if you see suspicious activity -- on campus or off, use 911.

I know you share my sense of gratitude that our student is unharmed.  Let us all continue to watch out for one another.

Ginger Ambler

Virginia Miller Ambler, Ph.D.
Vice President for Student Affairs