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The Daily Tar Heel

Robbery victim questions Alert Carolina's speed after armed robbery

The assailant stole $102 in cash and a pair of Sperry shoes worth $85 just after midnight.

The victim, who wishes to remain anonymous, said a man wearing a ski hat jumped out of some bushes by the trail connecting Ehringhaus Residence Hall to Rams Head Dining Hall, pointed a gun from his waist and demanded the money in his wallet.

“I told him to calm down. Keep in mind this is a walkway that is very frequented. There’s usually people walking up and down relatively constantly, so the whole time I was looking both ways hoping someone would walk by, see the situation and call the police, but that didn’t happen, unfortunately,” he said.

After stalling for as long as he could, the Ehringhaus resident placed his money on the ground for the assailant, he said.

“He then demanded my shoes. I stalled for a while by explaining to him that my shoes had paint on them, they smelled bad, they were not good shoes,” he said.

He said he then loosened his shoes and kicked them off toward the assailant.

“The first shoe I kicked off struck him in the face. He responded verbally angrily, but he didn’t do anything.”

The victim said the assailant also demanded his phone but decided it wasn’t worth staying longer in the open and fled.

The Alert Carolina system was activated, which sent emergency notifications to staff, faculty and students advising them to stay inside. It also sounded emergency sirens.

The victim said he thought sirens went off very late — about 10 minutes after he called 911.

According to the police report, the incident was reported at 12:37 a.m. Sirens went off around 12:50 a.m. and most Alert Carolina’s text and email notifications arrived before 1 a.m.

“I don’t feel safe at all walking around. I mean I still walk by myself places at night, and I don’t think any physical violence will happen to me, mainly because I’m a relatively large person,” the victim said.

UNC spokesperson Randy Young said the Alert Carolina system worked according to Department of Public Safety protocol.

Sophomore Celina Dimas said the Alert Carolina notifications were not fast enough. She said students need a rapid notification in order to stay clear of areas that might be dangerous.

“Especially if that was around the Pit or the library or something, I may be walking back to my dorm,” she said.

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