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Five campus crimes reported on 2017 Marathon Monday

BUPD records five crimes during the 2017 Boston Marathon. PHOTO BY CHLOE GRINBERG/ DAILY FREE PRESS STAFF

The Boston University Police Department saw low crime rates on Monday during the 121st Boston Marathon. BUPD crime logs reported two accounts of group disturbances, two accounts of intoxicated students and one account of sexual assault, all occurring on the BU Charles River Campus throughout the course of the day.

The Department received a report at 2:02 p.m. from Warren Towers that two people wanted to “make a report of sexual assault of a third party that [was] not with them” at the time of reporting the crime.

The group disturbances occurred outside 808 and 1047 Commonwealth Ave., one involving two women and the other involving three men, respectively. Both parties were gone upon the police’s arrival with no further issues observed.

Police presence has always been increased on the day of the marathon, but especially so since the 2013 bombing. Spectators approaching viewing areas of the course were asked to pass through checkpoints where security personnel asked to inspect bags and other items being carried.

BU spokesperson Colin Riley said that despite the tragic events of the 2013 Boston Marathon, the race will remain a largely attended event, especially for BU students.

“Boston University is the largest school in Boston, and the Boston Marathon means a lot to the city and all the communities, especially to those that are located on the route of the race,” Riley said. “I know that BU students went out. I am really pleased that there were no incidents — the people were well-behaved and recognized that the best role of the spectator is to give the support of the people running.”

Riley said the marathon is one of students’ favorite times of the year.

“Considering when the marathon is run, at the end of the second semester, it’s an opportunity for a lot of students to get out and cheer on these people who are doing something,” Riley said. “It has become a tremendous sporting event, but there is nothing that compares to [the] fact that millions [of] people get out there to support the runners.”

The Dean of Students office sent an email to the entire BU community on Friday before the marathon, reminding them of the security measures being taken and encouraging students to stay safe.

“We care about you and offer good (we think) unsolicited advice,” the email wrote. “Travel light, make plans to get home in a safe manner; stay away from people acting in a way that may harm you; be alert for scammers, thieves, and people who may try to victimize you; if you choose to drink, don’t overindulge; make sure your friends get home safely and keep an eye out for each other — especially if you’re a host; and, comply with any police advisories and requests. (And please, try not to be extra.).”

Katherine Cornetta, an assistant to the Dean of Students, said the primary reason for students’ Boston Marathon traditions is the excitement of the shared spring day off across the whole city.

“Lots of students see Marathon Monday as the first day of spring,” Cornetta said. “Since everyone has a day off, and it starts to get warm outside, they see this day as a very social occasion and it has been like that for quite a few years.”

Cornetta said the marathon emails and outreach differ each year depending on the current situation.

“I have been here for 13 years and there is something different that we do every single year,” Cornetta said. “But I can say that we always have a discussion beforehand of how to reach out to students and tell them to be safe.”

Several students said they were impressed by the level of security on Monday and never felt unsafe.

Jaspreet Kaur, a junior in the Questrom School of Business, said she attended the marathon with her friend. She said that the finish line on Boylston Street was still crowded with spectators, despite being the location of the 2013 bombing.

“They checked my purse and put the sticker showing that the bag had been checked and then police wouldn’t stop you again,” Kaur said. “I think that the security was same as the last year. I felt completely safe. I didn’t have any concerns going to the marathon.”

Jace Mordigal, a sophomore in the College of Arts and Sciences, said he thought the heavy police presence helped make campus feel safe.

“I wasn’t watching the race the whole day, so I can’t speak on behalf of everyone who was where the most activity was,” Mordigal said. “I saw a lot of cops around, and they were all in uniform and watching the streets and riding motorcycles and everything. I felt safe, personally.”

Hadi Zayer, a freshman in the College of Engineering, was watching the marathon for his first time Monday and said he never worried about his safety.

“I felt safe overall,” Zayer said. “I was close to the finish line, on Boylston Street, and there were so many policemen that I really don’t think anything suspicious would pass through them.”

Ellie French contributed to the reporting of this article.

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