UNH Response to Recent Durham Burglaries

Contact:
Kim Billings
603-862-1558
or
Sharon Keeler
603-862-1566
UNH Media Relations

August 6, 2003


The Durham Police Department has alerted the University of New Hampshire to another incident of burglary in an off-campus apartment building in the downtown area. The police believe this occurrence is related to five previous incidents that have occurred since the end of June.

According to the Durham police, during the early morning hours on Wednesday, Aug. 6, the suspect entered an off-campus apartment and cut or removed clothing from two sleeping female residents. There were no reported physical injuries.

Anyone with information is urged to contact the Durham Police Department at 868-2324.

"We are very concerned about the safety of our students and other women who may fall victim to this individual," UNH President Ann Weaver Hart said. "The university has mandated that its residence halls be locked 24-hours seven days a week to further protect the security of our on-campus students."

Hart stressed that UNH administrators and police are in regular contact with the Durham police and "we are doing everything within our power to support their efforts. The safety of our students, faculty and staff is of the utmost importance to the university and to me, and we will do everything possible to help in the resolution of this case. The university plans a comprehensive initiative to inform all of our students about this threat and will provide strategies by which women can protect themselves."

While the incidents have not occurred on the UNH campus, university officials have been notified. Previous incidents took place on Main Street, Park Court and Dennison Road.

University officials and local police are telling Durham residents to be vigilant and report any strange behavior or persons. They also urge residents to use common sense, including locking doors and other entrances, being aware of surroundings and replacing outside lights that have burned out.

Students seeking additional support services may call the UNH Counseling Center at 862-2090 or the Sexual Harassment and Rape Prevention Program (SHARPP) at 862-3494.

For more information contact Kim Billings, 862-1558, Erika Mantz, 862-1567, or Sharon Keeler, 862-1566, in University Relations.

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