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SMU Student Maces Man Who Grabs Her Near Campus

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(credit: KTVT/KTXA) Bud Gillett
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UNIVERSITY PARK (CBSDFW.COM) - A safety alert has gone out from Southern Methodist University again. A woman walking just off-campus was accosted and grabbed early Friday morning, according to a release from the school. The incident happened in the 3400 block of Normandy in University Park.

The student exited a taxi about 3 a.m. when she reported that a man walking toward her suddenly grabbed her by the arm. She said she screamed and yanked her arm away and pointed a pepper spray dispenser at him… and at that point he turned and fled. It happened off-campus, and University Park police told CBS 11 News that they have accepted the report for investigation. The details are still a bit sketchy though, according to police. The student was able to give a description however to police.

The suspect is described as a black male in his early 20s, about 6 feet tall with a muscular build. He was clean shaven and had light to medium skin. He was wearing a white polo shirt, khaki shorts and Sperry shoes. She said he had a black lanyard hanging out of his pocket.

Student Paz Beatty said it’s important for fellow students of both genders stay alert. “Honestly my first thought was, we’re really not doing enough to protect ourselves. I feel like if you’re walking around at night — and I know she had pepper spray — but I feel a little you need to be a little more conscientious about your surroundings.”

SMU has warned the student body of several alleged assaults already this semester. There were two reports of attacks in the space of a week earlier this month.

The school has urged everyone to always be aware of what’s going on around them, and especially not to jog at night wearing headphones.

Also, students walking the campus at night may request for campus police to escort them.

Anyone with information about the incident may contact the University Park Police Department at 214.363.3000 or the SMU Police Department at 214.768.3388. Information also may be reported anonymously through the SMU Police Department’s Silent Witness Program by calling 214.SMU.2TIP or online at by clicking here.

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