UNC first-year reports being followed across campus, into dorm by stranger

suspicious_person

A suspicious person was reported near Everett Residence Hall. 

Montegrico said she did not notice she was being followed until she was on campus across from Time-Out Grill.

“He followed me all the way to my dorm, and then when I got up the stairs and opened the door, he went past the stairs,” she said. “But as I was going up, someone from my hall was coming down. I ran up the stairs, because I was really creeped out. I guess when that girl who was going out opened the door he just caught it and was able to go inside.”

Randy Young, Department of Public Safety spokesperson, said DPS and the Department of Housing and Residential Education would like to see students stop letting people tailgate behind them into their residence halls.

“It’s sometimes hard, because the first instinct is to hold the door for someone coming in behind you,” he said.

The housing department deferred to DPS for questions regarding this case.

As soon as she got up to her room, Montegrico said she saw through the peephole that the man was on her hall.

“I was telling my roommate what had happened, and I guess he heard my voice, because I was talking really loudly,” she said. “He was about to go down the stairs and then he heard the voices. He just stood outside my door for a while.”

Montegrico said a police officer told her a similar incident occurred in Stacy Residence Hall, another dorm in her community.

“We weren’t even notified that there was an instance in Stacy, or that this happened,” she said. “These things aren’t really preventable, per se, but I just feel like if we were given a heads-up or a notice that a report had been made in our community, then there would have been a lot more precautions ... I talked to my RA about it, and she was infuriated, because she wasn’t ever notified about anything else that happened, the incident that happened in Stacy or anything.”

Montegrico gave a full report to DPS, and they recorded the incident as non-criminal suspicious activity, Young said.

“We did a full-search of the area, did not find the individual, but the entire department was made aware of the situation and her description of the individual,” he said.

Karlo Montegrico, Nicole’s brother and a junior at UNC, said what had happened to his sister made him scared.

“I didn’t think safety on campus was going to be a big issue, until my sister came here, and then that concern became a lot greater,” he said. “Now, I’m a lot more paranoid, even just seeing a smaller female walking by herself, especially in the dark.”

Young said the LiveSafe app for Android and iPhone can be an asset in keeping students safe.

“It allows you to send text messages or pictures or any of that kind of evidentiary information to 911,” Young said. “You can text 911 if you’re under duress. It also allows folks to monitor their family and friends while someone is walking after dark.”

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