Kaler calls for enhanced security after U of M gun scare

The University of Minnesota is stepping up security following an alleged attempted armed robbery that shut down the West Bank campus for about an hour Monday.

In an email to students and faculty, U of M President Eric Kaler referred to a rash of recent robberies and other crimes on and near the Minneapolis campus. Kaler called yesterday’s incident especially troubling.  He wrote that while it’s safe overall, “our campus is open and public, and many criminals perceive our students, faculty, staff, and property as easy targets.”

Kaler said he’s asked  university officials to find resources to pay more police overtime and increase  foot and bike patrols.  He also directed them to work with the City of Minneapolis to improve security.  And Kaler wants the U’s Gopher Chauffeur escort program enhanced.

The U president also listed long-term safety improvements:

“We will continue to add to our 1,700 security cameras on campus, particularly along high traffic, public areas. We also are developing a plan for enhanced building security to define what spaces are fully public, University community only, or restricted access, and how to better monitor and control openness of buildings. Unfortunately, this may inconvenience some, but it will add to our security.”

Less than a month ago, the U announced a weekend of extra undercover and uniformed police patrols following four robberies that targeted  students.

Here’s Kaler’s Campus safety message from the Office of the President website: