LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) – Following multiple reports of violent crime near University of Louisville’s campus, police have arrested a 16-year-old connected to the incidents.
The two incidents happened last week. The first happened near Third Street and Gaulbert Avenue, where police said the suspect sexually assaulted a woman at gunpoint, and then stole her car.
The next day, the suspect then used the stolen car to kidnap a U of L student and sexually assault her near a student housing complex at Seventh Street and West Shipp Avenue, according to police.
News of the incidents spread quickly across campus, leaving students on edge.
"It’s a little shocking to realize that we do live in an area that does have this kind of crime going on,” student Elliot Eckel said.
Just days after the reports were released, police arrest a 16-year-old in connection to the crimes.
"Just the simple fact that it is a 16-year-old, in itself, is just a little weird and scary,” student Jessica Sayels said.
Police said they believe the juvenile suspect was is responsible for the crimes but someone else may be involved as well.
Since the attacks, U of L police said they have ramped up security in the area by moving all resources to the North end of campus, near Old Louisville.
"We normally have officers assigned to zones, but what we've done in the last couple of days, that will continue until this case is solved, is we will continue to make our runs from that area,” Kenny Brown with U of L Police said.
In addition to the change in patrols, police are asking students to be aware of their surroundings, and travel smart. They recommend students walk in pairs or utilize the campus escort system, which is a police-run van that shuttles students from dusk until dawn if they don't feel safe walking home alone.
"It's a safety issue. We don’t want to encourage students to use it for a taxi someplace,” Brown said
Police said the campus is a safer place with one of the suspects behind bars but not all students agree.
"Just hearing about an individual arrest doesn't really make me feel more comfortable,” Eckel said.
Eckel said crime around campus is a problem but he's hopeful this arrest is bringing awareness to it.
The suspect is facing seven charges including two counts of kidnapping, two counts of sodomy, two counts of robbery and one count of arson.
LMPD is handling the investigation.