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University police moving off campus, into Campustown

Originally published October 22, 2010

The former Blockbuster in Campustown will be empty for only a little while longer.

“The University Police will be moving into the old Blockbuster either at the end of this year to the beginning of next year,” said Sgt. Rick Hutchison. “Hopefully we’ll move in sooner rather than later, though.”

There are a few major reasons the police department is moving out of its office near the parking deck and into the CampusTown building, Lt. Troy Eeten said.

“We were originally located in MacMillan Hall, and we moved here in 2000 because we expanded the department and outgrew that space,” he said. “Now we’ve outgrown this space as well.”

Hutchison said he agreed.

“We’ve at least doubled in size since we moved here in 2000,” he said.

The second major reason the police are moving to CampusTown is because it will greatly increase visibility, Eeten said.

“It’s very important to increase the visibility of the police department,” he said. “A lot of students have been here several years and still don’t know where we’re located.”

The move to the old Blockbuster building should also help to increase safety in CampusTown, Eeten said.

“Our presence in CampusTown will most likely make it safer,” he said. “At least one of our four squad cars will always be parked out there, so we’ll have at least one visible to the public all the time.”

The department is now deciding how to set up its new location, Hutchison said.

“Right now we’re going over the layout and trying to figure out the flow of the new office,” he said. “We’re trying to figure out the best ways to improve the department.”

The new office will be big enough to add several more important rooms, Eeten said.

“Since our space will be increased, we’ll have enough room to have an evidence room,” he said. “We’ll also have a lot more storage space in the new building compared to what we have here.”

So far, it is unknown how long the police will occupy a space in CampusTown.

“We don’t know how long we’ll be there for sure,” Hutchison said. “But we definitely hope to be in there for the long run.”

Eeten said he agreed.

“The length of time we’ll be there is unknown,” he said. “As soon as we move in, we’ll definitely be there for the foreseeable future.”

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