Robbery, attempted kidnapping at college campuses force heightened awareness for students

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — Three women were approached by separate men on local college campuses, putting some students on alert in otherwise safe environments, and forcing each university to notify the public of possible threats.

D’Youville and University at Buffalo’s south campus were bustling Friday, drawing students outside for what could be a final chance to toss a football or chat on a park bench before this weekend’s storm.

But students at each college were told Thursday by their respective university police departments about separate incidents, acting as important reminders about heightened awareness.

“I think it’s good that they tell the students what’s going on,” said D’Youville freshman Liz Hinterberger. “I think it’s good to know what’s going on. It doesn’t scare me. I’m just glad I know what’s going on. And I just keep an eye out a little more when I walk around alone.”

On Thursday, a female D’Youville student told security that just before 9:30 a.m., she was approached by a man who attempted to lure her into his vehicle. When she declined, Buffalo police say the man lunged at her, and then drove away.

That happened off Niagara Street, within sight of the dorms where Liz and her friend Dylan Markle live.

“I feel pretty safe,” Markle said. “I walk around here a lot. I’ve never had any issues personally. As long as you take precautions, I As long as you’re just aware, usually I don’t have any issues, knowing where you are and knowing what could possibly happen.”

At approximately 12:30 p.m. Thursday, two women were approached in the Parker parking lot on UB’s south campus, the university said. The man was wearing a ski mask and holding a knife.”

It’s not known whether the women gave the man anything, but he eventually ran off toward the woods on Winspear Avenue. UB officials declined Friday to comment on the report issued Thursday.

That kind of news gives pause to some students, who are already taking precautions to keep themselves safe.

“When I walk to the library at night, I call my mom and just have a conversation,” Hinterberger said. I call my friends and tell them, when I get there that I’m there safe. I don’t really have a problem walking at night.”

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