This message was emailed to students, faculty and staff on Sept. 28 by Wake Forest Communications and External Relations:
Recently, local media have reported on several high-profile criminal incidents, including some involving firearms. Wake Forest University leaders are aware and informed about these off-campus events. The University shares concerns expressed about criminal activity in the city and is especially concerned about any potential incidents in the areas around campus.
The safety and security of Wake Forest students is always the top priority of the University. The Wake Forest University Police Department (WFUPD) maintains a good working relationship with the Winston-Salem Police Department (WSPD), which is responsible for safety and security efforts throughout the city, including nearby neighborhoods where students live in private apartments and houses.
Since this weekend, WFUPD and other University leaders have heard from students about possible criminal activity near their off-campus residences. WSPD has responded to incidents reported, such as students hearing gun shots and other suspicious activities at off campus locations.
For all off-campus criminal incidents, the University recommends that students immediately contact WSPD, which will enlist the assistance of WFUPD in some cases.
It is important to note that none of the instances of violent crime reported by local media have occurred on campus or adjacent to campus. However, crime can occur anywhere and WFUPD officers remain alert to any potential criminal activity on campus. WSPD has assured University officials that it is also taking additional measures to address crime in the city, including in neighborhoods close to campus.
The University, as already scheduled, is working again in coordination with WSPD to bolster patrol of areas near campus. Starting in October, WFUPD will contract with off-duty Winston-Salem police officers to provide extra coverage of the campus perimeter from 5 p.m. until 5 a.m., seven days a week.
WFUPD wants to remind all students, faculty and staff to report any instances of crime or suspicious activity as they occur.
This fall, WFUPD is also implementing a new initiative to further its efforts to inform the campus community about safety and security. Called “StayaWAKE,” it is an off-campus safety awareness and education program led by members of the University Police Deacon Student Patrol.
In the coming weeks, WFUPD will continue interacting closely with WSPD, staying up to date on city crime trends and alert to any activity of concern to the campus and the nearby neighborhoods.