Although the College tries to make your campus as safe as possible, ultimately, you are responsible for your own personal safety. We provide many resources that enhance your awareness of, and encourage avoidance of situations that present the possibility of criminal activity. For those resources to work, you must participate.
Many incidents are crimes of opportunity perpetrated by those who are on the lookout for carelessness, inattentiveness, or for someone who projects the characteristics of a victim.
Read these safety measures and crime prevention tips carefully, and take the appropriate action to avoid becoming a victim:
- NEVER leave a door unlocked, not even for a minute. It invites theft of your personal property from residence hall rooms, vehicles, and apartments. Laptops are a particularly hot item to steal, as well as cash, credit cards and checks, electronics, and other personal items. A thief can enter your room, steal an item, and be gone in under 30 seconds. That’s less time than it takes you to visit the bathroom down the hall.
- Socialize in groups. If six friends go out, then the same number should return home together. It is unwise to go off with someone you don’t know, and it is unsafe to leave a member of the group behind with a stranger.
- Walk in well lit, highly traveled areas at night, both on and off campus. That dark shortcut may be tempting, but might result in your being assaulted or robbed.
- Do not leave personal items unattended anywhere. Students often put down a backpack or pocketbook in the cafeteria or the library, leave to get food or find a book, and come back to find the bag gone. Chances are your personal information, credit cards, Mack Card or other valuable items are in the bag and the ramifications are far-reaching.
- Textbooks are very expensive, which makes them a target for thieves. Pick a page and write something you would recognize on it, like your date of birth. If your book is stolen it is easily identified as your property if someone attempts to return it for money at the Bookstore.
- Be cautious about sharing personal information with ANYONE. You are not obliged to give out your Social Security Number or other private information to store clerks. If they refuse to finalize the transaction without it, LEAVE.
- Never open your door when someone knocks UNTIL you find out who’s there.
- If you have a bicycle, LOCK IT OR LOSE IT.
- If you see a person behaving suspiciously in a building, call Police Services immediately.
- Never prop exterior doors. It invites strangers to enter and perpetrate crimes of theft and violence.
Contact Police Services at Ext. 5555 or (978) 837-5555.
In case of EMERGENCY dial 5911 or (78) 837-5911
If one of your social group begins to behave in a manner that is out of character or inconsistent with the way they usually act, you should consider the possibility that their drink may have been tainted with a Date Rape Drug like Rohypnol or GHB. The names are different but the drugs have the same basic effect:
Fast onset (within 10-20 minutes) of
- appearing intoxicated (even when no alcohol has been consumed)
- fading in and out of consciousness
- loss of control of your decision making processes
- loss of memory
- There is also a strong possibility of death from such drugs, especially if they react negatively with any other medication the victim may be taking.
- Victims of these drugs can often sleep for many hours after consumption, and may not even be aware that an assault occurred.
To avoid becoming a victim of “RAPE DRUGS”:
- WATCH YOUR DRINK. Don’t trust anyone else to keep and eye on it for you.
- Don’t drink from punch bowls.
- Don’t accept free drinks from strangers.
- Look out for friends at social events.
- If you feel suddenly unwell, tell a friend and seek medical attention immediately.
- Report the incident to Police Services if you suspect you were victimized.
DON’T LOOK LIKE A VICTIM
Rapists and other criminals can spot a potential victim from afar. Our appearance and demeanor express attitudes and personality types to those around us, whether we realize it or not.
- Project the following attitudes to discourage anyone from targeting you as a victim:
- Hold your head up and look around you. Know what’s going on in your immediate surroundings. This gives an appearance of confidence.
- Stride out and walk with self-assurance to project that you have the power to resist attack. This will discourage criminals from picking you as a target.
- Make eye contact with those around you. Let them know that you’re aware of their presence. However, don’t stare, because this can be intimidating, or misconstrued as a challenge.
- Take a self-defense course like R.A.D.
If you become the victim of Identity Theft you should contact one of three major credit card bureaus and place a fraud alert on your credit report. The credit bureaus are required to share information with each other about identity theft, so there is no need for you to contact more than one of the three. You may also request a copy of your credit report.
The three credit bureaus are:
Equifax Credit Information Services
P.O. Box 740241
Atlanta, GA 30374-0241
Experian Information Solutions
P.O. Box 9530
Allen, TX 75013
Fraud Victims Assistance Division
P.O. Box 6790
Fullerton, CA 92634-6790