How safe are we on campus?


Posted Mon, Sep 23, 2013

How Safe Are We On Campus

THE COP SHOP: Auraria Campus Police Department provides a safe and secure campus that will allow the academic environment to flourish. [Photo by Keve Brockington]

6 p.m. Aug. 21: Three people argue over traffic.  All get out of their vehicles.  One pulls a gun.

7:15 p.m. Aug. 26:  A middle-aged white male exposes himself to students at the Colfax Light Rail Station on the south end of campus.

Are these two incidents indications that crime on campus is escalating?  Or were they rare occurrences?

According to the Auraria Police, the parties involved in the incident arrived to the first floor of the 7th Street Garage.  The victim confronted two suspects in the other car. One of the men pointed a handgun at the victim and warned him to return to his car. The two suspects fled the parking garage and have recently been found.

Approximately 30  people were at the Colfax Light Rail Station when the man exposed himself.  The suspect was reported to have left the station heading east bound and also appeared to be transient during his activity.

According to Campus Police, most crimes on campus are committed by sneak thieves.

How Safe Is The Campus

PROTECT AND SERVE: Students, faculty, and staff should notify authorities immediately of any suspicious activities. [Photo by Keve Brockington]

“Students, faculty, and staff should notify authority immediately.  Just call and never leave items unattended.  The largest form of incident on campus are crimes of opportunity.  For example, leaving personal belongings in the lounge or recreation areas of campus,” said Det. Sergeant/Commander  Jason Mollendor, a 12-year-veteran of the Auraria Campus Police Department.  Mollendor is a Metropolitan State University of Denver graduate with a criminal justice degree (2003).

Auraria Campus has encountered a fair amount of these incidences according to Mollendor.


“Our staff is working 24/7 and 365 days of the year in order to protect the campus and our community,” Mollendor said.  The question is how can these crimes be prevented?    “Students are involved no matter who commits a crime on our campus.”

Though campus is open to the public, Molledor said it ranks in the top 10 within safety standards that are upheld.

How Safe Are We?

DAY WATCH: Auraria police caution that most incidents are crimes of opportunity, and happen during the day. [Photo by Keve Brockington]

The library is a haven to many individuals that have no other option for relief or comfort from the elements.  Auraria Campus also offers a free meal every day to the less fortunate and homeless at the Catholic Church.  There is a soup kitchen which provides shelter as well.


As far as prevention, more security has been issued as well as enhanced police security.  This has been increased with the 24 hour surveillance on campus.  Several students and staff have been said to,“Please incorporate safety in numbers.  If you are walking at night or early in the morning, have someone with you.”


Mollendor added, “Most incidents on campus occur during the day.  These are the crimes of opportunity.  They appear to occur during the start of class on campus.”  There is also a high amount of crime on the south side of Auraria Campus due to the Colfax traffic.  “This is not limited to the south area.  Crime is committed all over campus.”


In addition, some students have taken advantage of the concealed weapons permit on Auraria Campus.  There is a website at and can be searched through the “Weapons Policy” link.  Commander Mollendor said all you need is a valid permit, and you are eligible to carry a concealed firearm.



About Keve Brockington

Keve Brockington is a Denver-area journalist.

View all posts by Keve Brockington

3 Responses to “How safe are we on campus?”

  1. Ashley Says:

    It’s good to know that they caught the guy that pulled the gun. Good story! One of Mollendor’s quotes is repeated though.


  2. Marie Says:

    I really like the beginning of this. Catches my eye and makes me want to keep reading.


  3. Sean Murphy Says:

    Well written Mr. Brockington. Good pictures and informative.


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