Over the past week, three businesses and two individuals have been robbed by armed suspects – totaling five armed robberies close to campus.
The Eugene Police Department (EPD) and University of Oregon Police Department (UOPD) are working together to catch those responsible for the crimes. Both departments are increasing their number of officers in the field and detectives on the case, according to the EPD.
“We have detectives and patrol units working actively on the case,” EPD public information officer Melinda McLaughlin said.
University of Oregon President Michael Schill sent an email to students on March 9 connecting them with safety resources and urging them to stay safe during this time.
In his email, President Schill said, “If you do find yourself confronted by someone who wants money or personal property, give it to them without a fight and call 911 as soon as it is safe to do so.”
Schill also encouraged students to take advantage of the campus shuttle services and to not walk home alone.
UOPD is now offering a UO Campus Shuttle that operates every 15-20 minutes in a bus stop-style on a fixed route from 5 p.m. to 1 a.m. every day of the week.
Safe Ride and the Designated Driver Shuttle are also available to all students, faculty and staff.
Timeline of events:
March 2 The Neighborhood Market on Hilyard Street and East 24th Street was robbed at 11:45 p.m. Read more about it here.
March 3 There were two robberies that occurred. At 3 a.m., a student was robbed at gunpoint near East 16th Avenue and Hilyard Street. At 9:06 p.m., the Subway at West 18th Avenue and Chambers Street was robbed.
March 5 Tom’s Market on East 19th Avenue and Agate Street was robbed at 9:30 p.m. Police officers patrolled the area until 11 p.m. with police dogs.
March 6 Pictures of the robbers from the security footage of Tom’s Market, Subway and Neighborhood Market were released.
March 8 At 12:30 a.m., a woman, 21, was robbed on Hilyard Street near East 15th Avenue. The suspect robbed her of her cash after threatening her with a handgun. Her roommate called 911 approximately 20 minutes later when she got home.
The suspects had similar descriptions from each of the cases, and EPD is looking into possible connections between each of the cases.
“We are definitely looking at the links between all the robberies both on the street and at the businesses in the area and paying attention to all the similarities between in those cases at this point in time,” Lieutenant David Natt of EPD Investigations division said.
EPD encourages students to walk home in pairs and take advantage of the services that the University provides.
“These are very significant crimes that are occurring, and we don’t want to see anyone get hurt,” Natt said.
The EPD said to call them at 541.682.5111 with any information regarding these cases.