Gardner-Webb Looking to Upgrade Door Security, Install More Surveillance Cameras

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BOILING SPRINGS, N.C.— Gardner-Webb University is exploring the possibility of installing a newer, more secure residence hall door system and more surveillance cameras at building entrances, University officials announced Friday.  The heightened security measures would better protect students’ safety, and would help prevent incidents like Tuesday night’s armed robbery in Lutz Residence Hall.

“What happened Tuesday is still on our minds, and the investigation is still ongoing,” said Noel Manning, director of University relations.  “In the aftermath of any crisis, the responsible thing to do is to evaluate what measures could help you prevent the same type of crisis from happening in the future.”

Manning said the door system currently in place is by no means insecure or faulty, and that even with the most secure system imaginable, the potential threat of crime can never be totally eliminated.   But University leaders are being “conscientious,” Manning said, in searching to find the very best systems possible, both to prevent crime on campus and to aid in investigations.

“Our University Police do an outstanding job of guarding and protecting our campus each day,” Manning said.  “But after Tuesday’s incident, we want to reevaluate our procedures and our resources, and make absolutely sure we’re equipping our University Police force with the very best resources possible to do their jobs and keep our students safe.”

The investigation into Tuesday night’s robbery is still ongoing.  The suspects are two black males in their late teens or early twenties.  They were wearing dark jeans and puffy black jackets, and one was wearing a goatee.  They were seen exiting the campus in two vehicles: a light-colored Ford Ranger pick-up with a utility tool box in the bed, and a dark-colored mid-sized sedan.

University Police have offered a $2,500 reward for any tips that lead to the apprehension of the two suspects.  Those with relevant information should call the toll-free incident hotline at 855-477-9347.

Located in Boiling Springs, N.C., Gardner-Webb University seeks a higher ground in higher education – one that embraces faith and intellectual freedom, and inspires in students a love of learning, service, and leadership.