There is a warning for SU students and people who live near the university. Syracuse Police and SU's Department of Public Safety are investigating three robberies near the campus that happened within hours of each other. Our Katie Gibas shows us what students should do to protect themselves.
SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- Fall is one of the busiest times for crime near Syracuse University, according to Syracuse University Department of Public Safety.
"There have been significantly increased patrols over the last several weekends on campus. We plan to continue to work together to provide a deterrent patrol to be out looking for folks and to minimize that this will happen again," said Tony Callisto, the Chief of the Syracuse University Department of Public Safety.
Despite those increased patrols, Saturday night into Sunday morning there were three robberies within eight hours near the campus. Syracuse Police said the first robbery happened around 8:30 p.m. in Oakwood Cemetery. A couple of law students told police that four men threatened them with a gun and a knife, and stole their wallets, keys and shoes. Two other incidents happened between 3:30 a.m. and 4:00 a.m. on Sunday morning on the 700 block of Ostrom Avenue and a parking lot on Walnut Avenue.
"These are preventable crimes. They're preventable by people following some basic tips of not walking alone, using the transportation system and calling for an escort when appropriate," said Castillo.
Syracuse Police Sgt. Tom Connellan added, "You want to stay in well-lit areas. And like the chief said, walk in groups. If everyone knows that's a good cut through, then people looking to victimize people might know that also."
Even though taking these easy steps greatly reduces your risk, police remind people if they run into a crook, do exactly what they're told.
"It's not worth getting injured over your wallet or just some cash. The best thing you can do is be a good witness. Get a really good description. Observe as much as you can, any scars, marks or tattoos," said Connellan.
And of course, if you see anything suspicious at all, police want you to call 911 right away. At this point, no arrests have been made but detectives are reviewing SU's security camera footage. Anyone with information is asked to call Syracuse Police at (315) 442-5222.