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Volume 72, Issue 97, Wednesday, February 21, 2007

News

Robbery attempt puts UH on alert

UHPD says it is seeking two suspects who fled after trying to take a woman's car keys on Monday night

by KELSIE HAHN
The Daily Cougar

The UH Police Department reported Tuesday that it is seeking two suspects in an aggravated robbery that occurred at 6:30 p.m. Monday in Parking Lot 1A outside Melcher Hall.

A female student was approaching her vehicle when one suspect grabbed her from behind and another demanded the keys to the automobile, UHPD reported in a Security Alert. The student screamed, bringing attention to others in the area, and the two suspects fled west through the lot toward the Power Building, according to the report, which is available on UHPD's Web site.

"Fortunately, there were other students in the area who heard her and came to her aid," Police Chief Malcolm Davis said.

The two suspects were described by witnesses as black males, both approximately 6 feet tall, 150 pounds and estimated to be between 16 and 20 years old.

One suspect was wearing a black do-rag, black cap, black shirt and baggy black pants. The other suspect was wearing a black do-rag and a braided hairstyle with white beads, a black shirt and gray baggy pants. The suspects were also reported as having a long barrel revolver.

UHPD searched the surrounding area for the suspects without finding them.

Anyone who has information regarding the incident or observes the suspects on campus are asked to contact the UH Department of Public Safety at (713) 743-3333 or 911.

Though the incident was not caught on cameras in the lot, one camera did record two men walking toward the area moments before the incident occured.

Capt. Brad Wigtil said investigators reviewed the video, but the camera was zoomed out too far for the images to be useable for identification purposes.

UHPD has also been unable to find images of the suspects on any other security cameras, he said.

Davis said students, faculty and staff should remain alert of their surroundings at all times and report anything out of place to UHPD.

"It's a matter of being cognizant of your surroundings. If you see something that seems out of place, let somebody know," he said. "Just believe in your instincts. Believe yourself, and take whatever steps you can to take care of yourself."

UHPD is also seeking information regarding a sexual assault that occurred Feb. 12 in Parking Lot 20C outside the Recreation and Wellness Center. 

A female complainant reported a man greeted her, approached her and then pinned her against her vehicle and fondled her. The complainant yelled and the suspect fled west across Calhoun Road. He was last seen in Parking Lot 1A near the Moody Towers, according to UHPD 

The suspect in the sexual assault investigation is described as a Middle Eastern male, approximately 6 feet tall and of slim build with short black hair. 

He was wearing an olive green short-sleeve button-up collared shirt and blue slacks.

Wigtil said UHPD has exhausted several leads on the incident and is asking that anyone with information contact the department.

Composite sketches of one suspect from the aggravated robbery and of the suspect in the sexual assault incident are available at www.uh.edu/police/security_alert/index.html.

Individuals in an emergency situation or who witness suspicious activity should call UHPD at 911.

 Send comments to dcnews@mail.uh.edu

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