A Safer Campus
March 23, 2011
The Bradley University Police Department’s efforts to support a safe environment have evolved through the years, but their primary focus remains the same: to protect life and property within and beyond the University community.
The 18 members of the Department patrol campus 24 hours per day, seven days a week. “We have upgraded vehicle striping on patrol cars as to make them more visible,” said Lt. Troy Eeten, a veteran member of the Department, noting that the fleet includes three SUV’s and two patrol cars, which are rolling at all hours, every day of the year. Officers can also be seen on foot and bicycle.
The recent relocation of the campus police headquarters to CampusTown is “further evidence of appreciation for the importance of a coordinated community policing effort,” said Vice President for Business Affairs Gary Anna. Bordering campus, officers continue to patrol the satellite building in CampusTown which houses the College of Education and Health Sciences while Westlake Hall is being renovated. “Even before the move from Westlake, we made frequent trips to CampusTown,” Eeten said. “Now we’re more visible there than ever.” The new space, which BUPD moved into in February of 2011, includes a dedicated gun room, training room, larger offices, and separate rooms for evidence, records and interviewing.
Officers offer additional support to students through preventative programs offered in the residence halls and Greek houses. By offering safety talks, Eeten said, officers help students recognize high-risk behaviors which aid in crime prevention. Officers also address the Residential Life staff during their summer training and speak to students and parents during Summer Orientations.
ForeWarn is another visible way the Department helps maintain campus safety. Students are strongly encouraged to register their cell phones with ForeWarn through their MyBU site. ForeWarn offers text messaging, Web updates, email and a new P.A. system to relay important information. This year, the University mandated that faculty and staff members must leave their phones on during class in the event of a campus emergency.
“Universities located in urban areas unfortunately do have certain exposures to crime committed by society and community members,” Gary Anna said. “We have patrol routines and interaction and coordination with the city of Peoria and other authorities to address this.”
In addition to enforcing state and local laws, and University safety policies, the BUPD stresses the importance of education and training for all personnel. All officers are certified Illinois Police Officers who complete 480 hours of initial training, in addition to numerous additional hours of ongoing in-service training. Officers are trained as medical first responders and intruder rapid responders. Additional student-friendly services include battery jumping, vehicle lockout assistance, and a student escort service.