Safe and Secure Santa Fe ~ Update

Help us create a safe and secure Santa Fe. Our student victim has returned to campus and is attending her classes! She is determined not to let her attacker compromise her life. She is a remarkable young woman. We salute her strength and courage, not to mention the way she picked the exact right moment to escape her attacker. The Santa Fe College community is grateful that she is safe, and we wish her all the best as she moves on from her ordeal.

In the meantime, we encourage everyone to take personal safety precautions and we are working in several ways, as a campus community, to insure your continued safety. Here are some of the strategies and actions now underway.

First, we are working closely with local law enforcement, tracking and investigating all leads. The Alachua County Sheriff’s Office has several detectives assigned full-time to this case.

We have posted two electronic message boards — one near Lot 9 on campus and the other on NW 39th Avenue, near where our student victim escaped — with special messages asking for information.

We have added extra police during the hours when the College is open. You may even see Alachua County Sheriff’s deputies and/or University of Florida Police Department officers working with Santa Fe College police officers.

We have placed additional portable light “trees” near Lot 9 on the north side of campus and Building WA on the south side.

We have added a new RAD class to the schedule. Have you heard of Rape Aggression Defense training? We usually run these FREE classes once a month on campus, but have added another class to meet demand. See the RAD schedule, here.

We encourage you to ask for an escort if you are walking to your car, or to remote locations, especially at night. Just call 395-5519.

Be alert and aware.

Suspect Description

Detectives with the Alachua County Sheriff’s Office are continuing their search for a male with a darker-skinned complexion of unknown race, possibly of Middle Eastern descent. He is described as having close-cut hair, an unshaven face, and a tattoo on his back right hand. He possibly stands 5’8″ to 5’11” and is believed to be in his late 20’s to early 30’s. He was driving a smaller, black pick-up truck with tinted windows and a grey interior.

Anyone with information or who may have seen anything suspicious is asked to call (352) 955-1818 to report it. Callers may also remain anonymous and be eligible to receive a reward up to $1,000 by calling Crime Stoppers at (352) 372-7867.

Personal Safety Strategies

Prevention of any crime begins with awareness. Become aware of your surroundings and stay tuned in for possible danger or threats to your safety.

Plan Ahead

  • Be wary and suspicious of observed behavior or activities that make you feel uncomfortable and avoid secluded places where you are put in a vulnerable position.
  • Trust your instincts.
  • If someone or something appears troublesome, leave the area and contact law enforcement.

When Walking

  • Always try to let someone know where you are going and when you expect to return.
  • Stay in well-lighted areas, away from alleys, bushes, and entryways.
  • If a driver stops to ask directions, avoid getting close to the car, and only accept rides from people you know well.
  • If a car appears to be following you, turn and walk in the opposite direction. After you have safely cleared the area, contact law enforcement.
  • If you’d like a police escort to your car, call 352-395-5519.

Traveling in Your Car

  • Have your keys ready when you approach your vehicle and check inside before entering. Lock your doors.
  • Avoid isolated roads and shortcuts and park in well-lighted areas.
  • If you are followed, drive to the nearest open business for help, or go to a police or fire station.