Smart phone app alerts college students of dangers near campus

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INDIANAPOLIS, Indiana – Safety on college campuses is a top priority and students are keeping an eye out for suspicious activity.

“If it is super sketchy then you definitely want to report it,” says IUPUI student Sabrina Valli.

Students at IUPUI receive Jag Alerts from campus police when there is an incident like a sexual assault or robbery nearby. Just last month, a student was hit with an unknown object and then robbed on campus. IUPUI Police sent out an alert to students about the incident and the search for the suspect.

“I feel that I’m more aware once I get the call but then it fades off,” says IUPUI student Cassie Andrews.

Now, a new smartphone app called Alert ID helps students stay aware. It provides an interactive map that alerts students when there is a crime near their location. The app also allows people to share photos and information regarding suspicious activity with each other.

“They can post suspicious activity and it will go out to all of the members in a one mile radius,” says Keli Wilson of Alert ID.

Some students say they would rather anonymously upload a picture and information to the app then call police about an incident.

“If you see something you need to report it. Especially to the police and on the app as well so people know what areas they should avoid,” says IUPUI student Brandon Thornsbury.

Campus police is not against the use of the app. However, a 911 call will reach law enforcement more quickly. Students say using an app along with the campus alert system could help make their urban campus safer.

“I would use it, especially if I saw something sketchy or a person breaking into a car or someone in need of help. I would definitely send that information in,” says IUPUI student Kynsie Someson.

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