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Speaking Out

Security and Common Sense

We must hold security staff accountable for the breach of security at the Quad. We must also prosecute and punish criminals to the fullest extent of the law as well.

However, I would like to know why the student's door was unlocked? I've also noticed that the crime statistics are much longer since students returned.

Crime can and does occur in the real world; however, by taking common sense precautions such as locking doors and being alert and vigilant, we (faculty, staff, and students) can take a bite out of crime.

--Nikola Sizgorich, Information Technology

Support Specialist, School of Medicine, Department of Information Services

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Concerned About Quad Incident

I understand there was a recent attempted sexual assault in the Quad, near Ware House. My daughter is now a freshman living in that dorm and I was curious to know if the alleged attacker was apprehended, what kind of charges he faces, and any follow up you have. Also, what changes are taking place to see that this is less likely to happen in the future.

--Steven Gamburg, MD, '77

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Response from Public Safety

During the early morning hours of Sunday, September 29, 2002, there was a breach of security at the Quadrangle that resulted in an assault. The University Police later arrested the individual who committed this assault. He has been charged with numerous offenses. The University continues to offer its full support to all members of the Penn Community through our Special Services Department and various resource centers.

A review of the events of that evening, and the manner in which the subject gained access to the Quadrangle has resulted in a series of actions taken by the Division of Public Safety. They are as follows:

  • The Allied SpectaGuard officer assigned to the entrance used by the individual who committed this assault was terminated.
  • Security in and around the Quadrangle has been increased, and proper access procedures will be strictly enforced.
  • In conjunction with Housing and Conference Services and the College House System, the Division of Public Safety is examining security issues at all University residences.

The entire Division of Public Safety, working as a team, will reinvigorate our dedication to the safety and security of all members of the University community. We know that the community expects nothing less than a complete commitment on our part to ensure your safety. Working together, we will continue to uphold this commitment to you.

--Maureen S. Rush

Vice President for Public Safety

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The following is in response to the letter that was published in Speaking Out last week.

Response to Parking Problems

The Department of Transportation and Parking has been experiencing some unique challenges and difficulties with the opening of the 40th & Walnut Streets garage (Garage 40), but we are systematically finding solutions to each situation and we commend our customers who are parking in this state-of-the-art facility for their patience and understanding throughout the past year.

This new parking facility was erected to serve multiple customer bases including commuting faculty, staff and students, long-term parking for resident students, short-term parking for market/retail customers and (soon to be) daily and evening parking for movie patrons. The challenge for us has been to develop logistics and systems that provide effective access and revenue control while at the same time meet the multiple and varied requirements of our customers.

Our original plan included reserving the upper levels--7-10 --for permit parkers (faculty, staff and students) who are frequent users who would quickly learn the layout and flow of the facility. Nesting gates were installed to reserve these decks for permit holders and eliminate the co-mingling of transient vehicles with permitted vehicles. The lower floors were dedicated to short-term transient parkers including market/retail customers, guests, vendors, etc., who come to campus for specific and usually infrequent visits.

With the fast approaching opening of the Bridge Cinema complex, we are anticipating a significant increase in the transient use of the 40th & Walnut Streets garage. In an effort to serve all of our customers effectively, the Parking Office has suspended the nesting restrictions, but we are requiring all faculty, staff and student permit holders to continue parking their vehicles on the upper floors (level 4 and above) of this facility. Nearly 20% of the parking inventory is located on the roof deck of this garage and these spaces are dedicated to permit parking. Please note, the annual permit fee for Garage 40 is the same Class A fee that is charged for other campus parking garages and surface lots.

The Department of Transportation and Parking will continue to review the parking logistics in this facility and make changes as warranted. We thank you for your anticipated cooperation.

--Robert Furniss, Director

Transportation & Mail Services

  Almanac, Vol. 49, No. 7, October 8, 2002