Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern

Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern

Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern


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Student fends off attempted robbery by punching attacker

As freshmen settled into college life during New Student Week,three separate attacks occurred Wednesday night in Evanston,including the attempted robbery of a Northwestern student.

The three incidents took place between 10 p.m. and 11 p.m., saidCmdr. Joseph Bellino of Evanston Police Department.

An NU student told police he was walking on the 1900 block ofOrrington Avenue at about 11 p.m. when a man between 18 and 25,about six feet tall and wearing a dark blue hooded sweatshirt witha zipper approached him from behind and demanded his wallet,Bellino said.

The student said that when he turned around, the man punched himin the face. The student then hit the man back in the face severaltimes, knocking him down and causing the man to ran away.

An hour before that, police said that two other unrelatedrobberies occurred south of campus and in South Evanston. Two16-year-old Evanston boys were robbed at the corner of GreenwoodStreet and Hinman Avenue, five blocks south of The Arch. Fifteenminutes later, two men approached a 27-year-old Evanston woman onthe 600 block of Michigan Avenue. One displayed a handgun anddemanded money.

But several parents and students interviewed Thursday said newsof the robberies didn?t change their impression of NU andEvanston.

Medill freshman James Levy said he is careful not to walk alone,but still feels safe at NU.

“I think that anytime you?re going to be on a college campus,there?s going to be crime,” Levy said. “It’s important to find abalance between trusting your community and protectingyourself.”

Debbie and Randall Richert of Billings, Mont., were on campus todrop off their freshman daughter this week, and said they thoughtthe campus seemed safe.

“If anything, we’ve had trouble getting in and out of her dormroom because of all the locks,” Debbie Richert said. “She’ll besafe if she?s careful.”

On campus, Assistant Chief Daniel McAleer of University Policesaid all freshmen must participate in safety information sessionsduring their orientation to learn about campus shuttles andpersonal safety precautions.

Bellino said EPD pays close attention to campus safety everyfall, but the string of attacks on students near campus last yearmade it even more important to the department this fall.

“This year we’ve put together a more complete approach,” Bellinosaid.

Wednesday’s incident marks the 13th robbery or attack on astudent since September 2003.

Special measures this year include additional patrolling of theneighborhoods near the NU campus, distribution of personal safetypamphlets to students and Evanston residents, and communitymeetings for Evanston residents to talk with police.

“We’re trying to reassure both students and local residents thatwe want to take a proactive approach to this transitional periodwhen we have an influx of people into the town,” Bellino said.”It’s our hope to demonstrate a greater police presence.”

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Student fends off attempted robbery by punching attacker