Providing protection to the campus community in order to maintain a safe learning environment is University Police Department’s goal here at Texas A&M University—Kingsville.
However, a week ago, a female student reported that two unknown males in Lot K had assaulted her on campus.
Hiram Perez, UPD Lieutenant, said that TAMUK is safer than other colleges.
“The students are safe, and we do our best to patrol and make sure that everybody is being safe,” Perez said.
Perez said that the students’ safety is always the top priority to UPD. However, Perez said he motivates students to learn to defend themselves as well.
“We are trying to come up with some safety programs, possibly trying to get them (students) more motivated to take some self-defense classes,” he said.
UPD being shorthanded and the assault incident raise questions of how safe students are here at TAMUK.
“We adjusted our schedules to working ten hour days instead of an eight hour day that way we got overlapping shifts,” he said.
UPD tries to have three officers on patrol at night, and this also applies to weekends.
Perez emphasized that the night shift should have more officers patrolling the campus. But he also recommends that students know their surroundings.
“Know your surroundings, hangout with more than one friend that way you are not by yourself,” he said. “If you are by yourself, especially in those back parking lots, call us and we will give you a ride where you need to go.”
Perez also said that it is up to the individuals to be prepared as well, to know what to do and what not to do, especially at night.
Patrol Officer Carolina Rosales said she agrees with Lieutenant Perez that officers patrolling campus at night along with emergency call boxes make TAMUK a safe campus.
Rosales is one of the officers that helps in securing everyone on campus. However, Rosales, like Perez, emphasized knowing your surroundings.
“Don’t be ignorant of the surroundings, usually students don’t pay attention,” she said. “When you get in your vehicle make sure there is no one in the vehicle and if you see something wrong around the car zone, get the phone and call 911.”
Caroline said UPD is in the process of hiring five more officers in order to better serve the campus community.
“After they do the hiring process we should have at least five (patrolling officers) on day and four to five (patrolling officers) at night,” she said.