UNT Victim Speaks Out After 2 Robberies on Campus
Rubia Naeem vividly remembers her attack last week 300 feet from the UNT campus.
The sophomore was walking home to her apartment from her night class at the BLB around 8:00 p.m. Cell phone in hand with earphones in, she was listening to her new favorite artist, Doja Cat. Near the 900 blocks of West Prairie Street and West Sycamore Street, a stranger approached her from behind.
“I was literally on the sidewalk near the parking lot of Sorority Row,” Naeem said. “I've walked this same path at least 200 times since I’ve been here in Denton. My apartment’s literally 10 minutes away so I’ve always felt super safe.”
Naeem’s phone was in her right hand when she felt a stranger grab her wrist reaching for it. She was stunned for a moment before realizing the stranger was trying to pry her phone out of her hand. She tried to pull away.
“He started pushing me, and he pushed me onto the ground. Then he started kicking me, and we were wrestling. I remember my headphones were all wrapped around us.”
She remembers clearly her assailant was wearing a white t-shirt with nike slides. He had a short afro. She started to scream, and other residents began running to her aid. The attacker jumped up, and with a last ditch effort grabbed her headphones. He fled the scene in a white four-door Sedan.
“I remember this random girl helped me,” Naeem said. “She called the police from the emergency telephone that was like 10 feet from where I was attacked.”
Naeem was taken to the UNT police station. She ended up getting her phone taken by police to test for the handprints after fighting so hard already to keep it from being taken away from a stranger. She had bruisers across her arm and her knuckles.
Later that night, another robbery happened with similar circumstances. Police responded to another call at 8:33 p.m. from an individual who said he and a friend were sitting on a bench in front of the UNT Speech and Hearing Building. Someone walked up to them, snatched one of their phones and also ran into a white four-door sedan.
“The police told me they had video footage from cameras, and his finger prints. Plus he left a nike slide behind,” Naeem said.
September is National Campus Safety awareness month. UNT offers Campus Safety Programs to students, faculty and staff. As for Naeem, she feels traumatized by the experience.
“I was afraid of walking back through that same path to class,” Naeem said. “Now I see other students walking around with their headphones in, eyes glued to their phones, and it could have been them.”
Leigh Anne Gullett, the associate director of news for the Division of University Relations, Marketing and Communications encourages students to participate in the Safety Fair happening September 26. The event will be going from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on the South Lawn of the Union.
“UNT Police are also planning a National Night Out on campus, coming soon for students,” said Gullett.
Gullett has this list for students to remember when walking walking on campus.
1. Immediately report suspicious or dangerous activity to the police by dialing 911.
2. Trust your instincts. If a situation feels wrong or dangerous, it may be. Get away, call for help, and listen to your instincts.
3. Always be aware of your surroundings.
4. Travel with a friend or in a group if possible.
5. Use the university e-ride transportation service. http://transportation.unt.edu/e-ride
If you have any information regarding this offense, please contact the UNT Criminal Investigations Division at (940) 565-3006 or you can remain anonymous by calling UNT Crime Stoppers at (940) 369-TIPS.
Header image by Jade Jackson.
Header design by Tori Falcon.