U area sees increase in violent crime

In addition to two weekend crime alerts, another student was robbed at gunpoint.

Morgan Wolfe

Another University of Minnesota student was robbed at gunpoint in addition to the two incidents that prompted crime alerts over the weekend.

University of Minnesota Police Deputy Chief Chuck Miner said the weekend’s warm temperatures may have played a part in the slight uptick in crime.

“Typically, it is very cold this time of the year,” he said. “It was a bit warmer last weekend, so that could have had an impact on the suspects going out and looking to create crime.”

Student robbed in Southeast Como

A University of Minnesota-Morris student was robbed in Southeast Como on Saturday morning while he was in town visiting a friend.

Logan Brion was attacked at about 6:30 a.m. on Saturday at the intersection of 15th and Como avenues southeast, according to a Minneapolis police report.

Brion said he noticed three men following him, so he began to run.

Once the men caught up with him, they demanded Brion’s wallet and began to punch and kick him. When Brion told them he didn’t have his wallet, the men became upset.

“One of them threatened to shoot me with a gun and said he was going to kill me if I didn’t comply with them,” Brion said.

The suspects then demanded his winter coat, iPhone and drawstring bag.

“I didn’t provoke them or anything, they could’ve gotten everything they wanted without violence,” he said.

Two bystanders saw the attack and called the cops, Brion said.

Minneapolis Public Information Officer John Elder said no arrests have been made.

Brion later tracked the phone to a housing project near the Cedar-Riverside area using an iPhone-locating app.

The Minneapolis Police Department is still investigating the incident, Elder said.

“There is nothing like this in Morris,” Brion said.

News in weekend crime alerts

A BB gun and items stolen from a man who was robbed at gunpoint in the Marcy-Holmes neighborhood early Sunday morning were later recovered, according to a Minneapolis police report.

University students, faculty and staff received a crime alert on Sunday from University of Minnesota police Chief Greg Hestness about the robbery.

Rory Traut, who isn’t affiliated with the University, was walking on the footbridge near Van Cleve Park when four men in masks took his wallet, iPhone and iPhone charger.

One of the men held a gun to Traut’s neck during the robbery.

“I’m from a small town — it makes me a little more nervous about going to Dinkytown or Minneapolis,” Traut said.

Because the suspects were wearing masks, police don’t have a lot of evidence for the case. But as of Monday afternoon, the incident was still under investigation, Elder said.

The fingerprints police pulled from the gun were inconclusive, he said.

Police still don’t have enough evidence to charge the three suspects arrested in connection with a different robbery near Williamson Hall on Friday, UMPD Deputy Chief Chuck Miner said.