Early morning armed robbery on VCU campus rattles students

Posted at 11:32 PM, Jun 21, 2013
and last updated 2013-06-22 09:09:46-04

RICHMOND, Va. (WTVR) --  “Give me your money or I'll shoot you and your dog.”

That was the demand two victims heard early Friday morning in the 500 block of West Broad Street. They were on the fringes of the VCU campus, out for an early morning walk with their dog when they were robbed at gunpoint.

“They're cowards,” said VCU graduate Kayla Huddleston. “ What are they going to get? 20 bucks and a credit card that you cancel the next day? I guess you got to be smart and give them what they want."

Police say that's exactly what you should do and then call for help.

Richmond Police say the incident started with a suspect making small talk with the two victims about wanting a cigarette.  When they said they didn't have one, a gun was displayed and a suspect said, "I will shoot you and your dog."

The two other suspects then swiped the victims’ wallets and passport.  And according to police, all three suspects fled towards an alley on Grace Street.

"I try to stay away from Grace Street because it's shady,” said graduate student Shilpa Singh.  She said the robbery was in the back of her mind as she walked home Friday night.  "It's scary, yes."

During the summer Singh said, students have to walk, or call the campus escort service because after 7 p.m. buses don't run.

If she has to walk by herself, she does it early and out in the open, hoping by staying in high traffic areas she can avoid becoming a target.

"We are international students,” Singh said.  “We don't have family here, so it's a major headache when this stuff happens to us."

Both Richmond and VCU police say they will increase patrols in the area.

If you were nearby and saw anything suspicious Friday morning call Crime Stoppers at 780-1000.