The Student News Site of Grand Valley State University

Grand Valley Lanthorn

The Student News Site of Grand Valley State University

Grand Valley Lanthorn

The Student News Site of Grand Valley State University

Grand Valley Lanthorn

GVPD reports a quiet “Halloweekend”

GVL / Alena Visnovsky

Halloween on a college campus can typically correlate with increased police presence and safety hazards. However, law enforcement at Grand Valley State University said this year’s “Halloweekend,” the weekend before Halloween, was relatively calm.

The Grand Valley Police Department (GVPD) was on the lookout during Halloween week and weekend but was not faced with any serious or life-threatening situations. 

“It was actually a pretty chill Halloween weekend,” said GVPD Captain Leah Heaton. “Usually that is one of our busier weekends in the fall. For on-campus stuff, we had a couple of liquor complaints, but that was pretty much it. We did have the football game, which brought a few other things, but nothing major.” 

Heaton is also the Assistant Director of Public Safety at GVSU. She said there were increased police patrols off campus, as is typical for around Halloween, but law enforcement did not have to respond to as many drastic calls as in the past.

“A few parties and a few citations for underage drinking, but overall, this has been one of the quieter Halloween weekends that we’ve had,” Heaton said. “We weren’t too busy, so people are partying responsibly and doing the right thing- that’s always a positive.”

GVSU students took note of the increase in patrols and police presence in the area. Most frequently, students saw GVPD and other officers around roadways and traffic stops keeping watch for drunk drivers the weekend before Halloween and following Tuesday, Oct. 31.

Sarah Wolter and Eliana Weinert, two GVSU sophomores, said although they saw lots of GVPD officers both on campus and off, they weren’t alarmed by their presence.

“I was on Lake Michigan (Drive), and there were about eight police officers. They were pulling people over,” Weinert said. “On Saturday night, Absolute (Security) and GVPD were driving around.” 

Wolter said there was increased activity on and off campus and witnessed many individuals being pulled over, but nothing raised a concern.

GVL / Alena Visnovsky

While not connected with the holiday, one of the more reported issue GVPD is warning students about minor theft. Heaton said GVSU Campus Safety and GVPD have recently seen an issue with people going through unlocked cars and stealing valuables, especially after the students returned from fall break.

“We had a group of individuals come out here and basically go through vehicles that were unlocked, taking things of value, so it’s always good to keep your valuables out of your car and to lock your doors,” Heaton said. “We have not seen anyone breaking into vehicles out here, but it is happening in the Grand Rapids area, so that’s always something to be aware of as well.”

Heaton said these car break-ins were caught on video, but the security footage was not clear enough to identify the suspects. 

Additionally, GVPD has reported an increase in assaults on campus, especially between roommates. 

“This year, we’ve had some assaults here on campus. That’s kind of been an uptick for the past couple of years, where we hadn’t really seen that previously,” Heaton said. “Post COVID-19, they (students) all have to figure out how to live with everybody again, now we’re seeing a lot of roommate conflicts.”

On resource GVPD and the Department of Public Safety always advise GVSU students and faculty to use is the Laker Guardian app. The app puts campus safety resources directly into students’ hands.

“Download it and you can text us directly if you are seeing things, especially if you see something suspicious like the car break-ins,” Heaton said. “Just give us a text or a call, and we’ll come out and, you know, hopefully, be able to find people or at least maybe stop what they are doing.”

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