Two more flasher incidents reported

Alan Butterworth

Just a week after flasher suspect Richard Lee Sanders was arrested, two more indecent exposure incidents were cited, according to police reports.

The first incident occurred in the morning last week near Coffman Union and was shortly followed by a similar incident off campus.

Given the similarity between the witnesses’ descriptions, officers believe the two incidents might involve the same person, Deputy Police Chief for the University Police Department Steve Johnson said.

The suspect was described as a Hispanic male, dark hair, 5 feet 10 inches tall, in his late 30s, wearing a light-colored T-shirt and dark jeans.

This sort of offense is “definitely a cause for concern,” Johnson said.

“They scare the heck out of the victims,” he said, adding that they might have other motives, which make them dangerous.

If confronted with such an incident, Johnson said, the number one thing to do is be safe.

“Get to a safe location where there are other people. Avoid contact and move to the other side of the street,” he said.

Johnson also encouraged students with cell phones to get a good description of the suspect and call 911 right away, if possible.

“Many times, they are repeat offenders and have been arrested before,” Johnson said. “Therefore, there may be photographic records which may help in apprehending suspects.

“Even if it doesn’t bother or scare you, everyone should call the police, not just those who are distressed.”

In other incidents, more than 20 cases of minor consumption were reported last week, according to police reports.

The ages of offenders ranged from 17 to 20. Not only University students were involved.

“We even have high school kids coming here to drink to the point where they’re unconscious,” Johnson said.

“Most offenders exhibited behavior that attracted the attention of officers,” Johnson said.

Cases included students drinking, urinating, vomiting and passing out in public areas.

Johnson said that because of the circumstances of a new school year, some students are more likely to abuse alcohol.

“Students are on their own for the first time. It’s a social time, they have new friends and there are a lot of parties,” he said.

“Extreme drinking behavior is becoming way too common, and it’s dangerous behavior,” Johnson said. He stressed the need to drink responsibly.

“Having common sense and respect is an important part of being a good neighbor,” he said. He added that the biggest complaint of neighbors in the area is “party problems and the problems associated with binge drinking.”

Alcohol on college campuses is a nationwide issue with “serious consequences,” Johnson said.

In one alcohol-related incident at Colorado State University on Sept. 5, 19-year-old sophomore Samantha Spady was found dead inside a fraternity house, Johnson said.

At the University, police have already had several cases where students were taken to urgent care.

“We’re just lucky we don’t have more people suffering very grave consequences,” Johnson said.

Alcohol abuse is linked to many other problems involving traffic accidents, assault and damage to property, Johnson said.