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In Wake of Kidnapping & Assault, UT Students Told to Stay Vigilant

Rachel Adams-Heard

Campus safety is on students' minds after a student was kidnapped and sexually assaulted last week. The attack took place late at night in the 900 block of West 26th Street, in the heart of the West Campus.

SURE Walk is a student government volunteer program that offers a safe way for students to get home at night: students can call a phone number and request someone to walk with them.

But the program isn’t available right now: SURE Walk is available during the fall and spring semesters – but not during the summer.

SURE Walk director Leigh Larson says student government leaders are talking about extending the program into the summer, but that expansion depends on a steady stream of volunteers.

For now, students on campus on nights when SURE Walk is not available can follow the below tips endorsed by SURE Walk and UTPD:

  • Walk in groups
  • Pay close attention to surroundings
  • Don’t listen to music on headphones
  • Dial 911 or UTPD when feeling uncomfortable

You can find more safety tips from UTPD.

Larson says other potential SURE Walk improvements include the addition of golf carts to allow volunteers to respond to callers more quickly, as well as a phone app that would send a message and location to the SURE Walk line. 

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