Requests for University of Minnesota campus safety escorts spiked following Monday night’s shooting near Centennial Hall.
Campus escorts accompanied 54 people Tuesday night, and 45 people Wednesday night, a large jump from only 13 requests Monday night before news of the shooting had spread, said Justin Yarrington the assistant manager of the University Security Monitor Program, a branch of the University of Minnesota Police Department.
The previous week, Yarrington said that requests averaged from 10 to 15 per night. However, Yarrington said the shooting may not be the only factor contributing to the increase in escort requests during this past week’s subzero temperatures.
“Weather generally plays a big role in the number of escort calls that we receive as well,” Yarrington said.
Following the shooting, the UMPD program decided to see if they could meet the demand of requests and then go from there.
Yarrington said that whether the increase is due to students’ reactions to the shooting or weather conditions, the service has been able to handle the increase of requests well and has been able to stick to its advertised wait time of 15 minutes.
The UMPD offers the free service for students, staff, faculty and visitors to be accompanied by a walking or biking trained security guard to and from campus locations and adjacent neighborhoods.