Albany State University freshman get crime prevention tips - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Albany State University freshman get crime prevention tips

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1100 freshmen are reporting to Albany State University this week.   A record for an incoming class.

Today Dougherty County and University law enforcement talked frankly to them about crime in Albany.

Most of these new Albany State freshmen are 18 to 20 years old, most away from home for the first time. So law enforcement leaders wanted to make sure they knew how to avoid becoming a crime victim.  Or ending up in the jail themselves.

Columbus native Janecia Hill, one of Albany State's new freshmen, says she heard about Albany's crime rate before enrolling.

Hill said "I'm a little scared, a little worried. But I'm sure the police on this campus, they reassured us that everything was going to be all right."

Bradford Austin from Adairsville said he also feels safe at Albany State.

Austin said "I know the crime rate down here, but I have a God that protects me, so I am not worried about it all."

Hill, Austin, and most of the 1100other freshman heard law enforcement give lessons on crime and safety at Albany State. Dougherty County Sheriff Kevin Sproul said college students are often targets for criminals.

 Sproul said "They don't think somebody is taking their identity from them or steal their identity or break into their car, or break into their dorm room. So we've gone over some of those things."

He also brought inmate uniforms that are worn at the Dougherty County jail to show the students what could happen if they become the law breakers, especially becoming involved in drugs.

 Albany State University Police Chief John Fields said "They need to worry about temptation, peer pressure. Don't worry about your safety on campus."

Albany State is rated one of the safest campuses in Georgia's University system. But law enforcement wants these students to learn to protect themselves.

Hill said "Definitely I think people should be cautious of their safety and their surroundings, especially females, of where they are going. "

And to make good choices to keep themselves out of trouble.

 Austin said "Got to protect myself. Be cautious of the people I surround myself with."

Because law enforcement leaders want these 1100 freshmen to have the best four years of their life, without being involved in crime.

More than two-thirds of this freshman class is from outside of Albany, and new to the community.

Law enforcers also talked to students about what to do in case of tornadoes or other emergencies.

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