April Campus Police Updates
Safety and Wellbeing Advisory Committee (SWAC)
In 2020, VCU created the Safety and Wellbeing Advisory Committee (SWAC) to improve its public safety model. One of the committee’s final recommendations in 2021 was that the university create a non sworn crisis and de-escalation unit.Starting in February, VCU Police activated a new, six-member team of unarmed staff members known as safety ambassadors. The non sworn unit responds to calls for service on VCU’s campuses that do not require a police officer.
At VCU, we all play a role in keeping streets safe. VCU Police reminds cyclists to practice safe habits while riding:
- When riding on roadways, follow traffic signals & signage. Use hand signals.
- Use a bike path if one is available. When riding on the sidewalk, yield to people walking or rolling.
- Always be aware of your surroundings; avoid using headphones or earbuds while riding.
- Wearing a helmet is recommended. Consider wearing bright/reflective clothing & bike lights, especially at night, to make yourself more visible.
- A front light and rear reflector are required after dark & a red tail light is required on roadways with posted speeds of 35 mph or greater.
Due to the tremendous amount of traffic on VCU’s campuses, drivers, cyclists & pedestrians are asked to practice safe travel habits at all times. The VCU Police Department thanks you for helping us keep campuses safe.
Public Safety Advisory (PSA): VCU Police advise community members of concert ticket scam
The Virginia Commonwealth University Police Department recently received two reports from VCU students who were scammed out of $400 each after sending payments to an unknown individual/s claiming to sell concert tickets.
Last month, the suspect entered student-based GroupMe online chat groups claiming to be selling tickets to artist Taylor Swift’s May 12, 2023 concert in Philadelphia, PA.
At first, the suspect used the GroupMe username “Rodney Ram” (a reference to VCU’s Athletics mascot, Rodney the Ram).
However, detectives made contact with a third student who, at the request of the suspect, sent a photo of their VCU ID card; the suspect claimed to want to confirm the student’s identity prior to a purchase. While this third student ultimately did not send money for tickets, the suspect/s is now using this student’s name as a GroupMe username and has sent the photo of the student’s ID to others as a cover identity for the scam.
The two victims who sent money to the suspect/s used the Venmo app.
VCU Police are leading the investigation, which is ongoing. Anyone with information about this individual’s identity, or location, is asked to contact VCU Police. Additional victims of the scam are also encouraged to contact police.
Anonymous tips will be accepted:
- For non-emergency tips, call VCU Police 24/7: (804) 828-1196.
- VCU students, faculty, staff and Richmond residents can download the free LiveSafe mobile safety app on a smartphone to submit tips, screenshots, photos and videos directly to VCU Police; tips are monitored 24/7.
- Tips can also be submitted to Metro Richmond Crime Stoppers at (804) 780-1000 or on the P3 Tips mobile app.