An off-campus Yale student was robbed and assaulted by two attackers in the early hours of Tuesday morning.
New Haven Police Department spokeswoman Bonnie Winchester said the attack took place at around 1:45 a.m. on the intersection of Elm St. and Platt St., while the student was walking towards his home on Winthrop St.
The student said he was approached by two men he did not know, one of whom asked him if he had 50 cents, Winchester said. When the student said no, the man hit him and the second man searched the student’s pockets. When the attackers found no money, they grabbed a file folder the student was carrying and ran west on Elm St.
The student did not report the incident until about 4:00 p.m. that day, Winchester said. The NHPD has not made any arrests related to robbery and does not know who the two attackers were.
Yale Police Department Lt. Michael Patten said students should exercise caution when walking around campus and the city late at night.
“We always advise people to walk with someone else and if you have an alternative to walking, don’t walk,” he said. “Try to have situational awareness.”
Patten said students should use public transportation, like the minibus, to go between on-campus and nearby off-campus locations.
According to the University Shuttle web-site, the minibus’ routes do not extend as far as where the robbery took place, which is also outside of the Yale Police Department’s jurisdiction.
If a student must walk, Patten said, the student should remain alert and look out for potentially dangerous situations.
“Don’t walk around with iPod stuck in your ears or while reading a book,” he said. “They look to pick off people who look vulnerable. If something doesn’t look right, get away from there.”
Shannon Guy ’08, who lives off-campus by Dixwell St. and Lake Place, said she agrees with Patten’s suggestions.
“I always take Yale’s security service,” she said. “I feel a commitment to take it because I do not feel safe walking back to my apartment by myself.”
But she said the shuttle service can also be frustrating because of the long waits — anywhere from 10 to 30 minutes — she must endure when she calls for the shuttle. This long wait, she said, can discourage other students from taking the shuttle when it would be ideal for them to do so.
Last year, 19 Yale students were robbed while on public property, Patten said. Last month, a Yale Divinity School student was robbed and assaulted near the Divinity School in the morning by a group of youths.