By Allie Smyth
Non-students wreaked havoc on campus during the months of May and June, keeping Campus Security officers busy with broken glass and bones, a kidnapping attempt and a gun complaint, among several other incidents.
In a possible abduction attempt, an unidentified male believed to be a non-student approached a five-year-old girl at the University of Calgary swimming pool, and reportedly took her by the hand. When an 11-year-old girl intervened and confronted the male, he left the pool area without the girl. Campus Security was not notified until the next day, at which time they contacted Calgary Police Services.
"It remains incumbent on all parents and guardians of children to make sure their children are properly supervised at all times while on campus," said U of C Campus Security Manager Lanny Fritz.
May was comparatively slower for Campus Security, who recruited and began training six new officers. Officers also participated in formal bike training facilitated by the CPS. Bike patrols tour the perimeter of campus every half hour, and increase response times.
"The training specifically targeted enhancing the proficiency and safety of the bike teams," said U of C Security Operations Coordinator Bob King.
Campus Security and the Calgary Fire Department attended a number of minor fire incidents on campus in May and June. Careless smoking was the likely cause of a grassfire in the West Campus area, which resulted in the near evacuation of the Physical Plant staff. A small fire in a garbage bin in Varsity Courts was easily extinguished, and the CFD also visited a residential unit in regards to some improperly stored flammable articles in a basement. Parking Lots 11 and 21 were both the scene of brush fires caused by dry weather. No injuries resulted from any of the fires.
The NOFX concert brought mayhem to campus in early June. Among drug infractions, arrests and injuries, a non-student attending the concert was hurt when he fell backwards over the railing of third floor MacEwan Hall outside the ballroom. Fortunately for the individual, the canopy of the Puff and Pop flower stand on the ground floor broke his fall.
"He was either sitting or leaning on the rail and fell over backwards, landing on the canopy of what is now the flower shop," explained Fritz. "We believe he broke his foot as a result of the fall. He was transported by Emergency Medical Services to Foothills Hospital in a very intoxicated state. We were later informed that he staggered away from the hospital before receiving treatment."
The night of the same concert, approximately $1,000 damage was done to a security vehicle when another non-student attending the concert rammed a construction barricade through the window of the vehicle.
"Some Students’ Union staff witnessed the incident, followed the offender to his vehicle and reported the licence plate to Campus Security," said Fritz. "The information was passed on to the police and the offender has since decided he would like to pay for the damages."
A capacity crowd celebrated the last open night of Max Café and Bar with drunken festivities. Campus Security was kept busy with crowd control and minor incidents, including a fire extinguisher discharge in Residence.
CPS responded to a call for assistance from Campus Security regarding a young male heading towards the U of C campus openly displaying a handgun. McMahon Stadium staff originally spotted the individual and informed Campus Security that he was heading north towards the main campus. Five dispatched Campus Security officers immediately formed a containment pattern that discouraged the gunman from continuing on to campus.
"We monitored his foot traffic by camera and set up a perimeter [at a safe distance] while waiting the three or four minutes for police to respond," said Fritz. "Once on scene, the police officers used their car doors as protection and drew their handguns. They experienced no resistance and the surrendered handgun was discovered to be an unmarked replica semi-automatic set up as a BB gun."
The individual turned out to be a non-student living in Residence. Charges are pending. It is against university policy to allow firearms or any facsimile thereof on campus.
"Expect to be dealt with by the police," cautioned Fritz. "A gun complaint at the university is a priority for CPS."