Falsified crime report heightens student anxiety

Amanda Verdi, Associate News Editor

A falsified crime report released Saturday concerning an armed robbery in broad daylight on Broadway Street caused backlash throughout the Tulane community.

Tulane University Police Department sent out a crime alert Saturday stating that a Tulane student was robbed by a suspect brandishing a weapon at 3 p.m. Saturday at 835 Broadway St. TUPD sent an updated alert Sunday, which revealed that the initial report was false. 

Hilal Williams, New Orleans Police Department public information officer, said a third party called NOPD to report the robbery without the student’s knowledge. The student later told detectives that he lost his phone, which may have caused the report. 

“The victim advised detectives that he never asked anyone to call the police, nor did he want to file a police report,” Williams said.

TUPD Superintendent Jon Barnwell confirmed that no robbery actually occurred. He declined to comment further.

“This is an NOPD case, and any comments should come from them,” Barnwell said. “We merely communicated the information to the campus community.” 

The initial crime report caused anxiety for many students.

“The fact that it was in the middle of the day freaked me out,” sophomore Elizabeth Donhauser said. “I knew my parents were freaked out.”

Some students said the falsified report makes them question the validity of other reports.

“It makes me wonder what other false reports were sent out,” junior Mitchell Jackson said.

At this time, NOPD has not charged the student for falsifying the report.

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