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The Madison Police Department will be deploying more resources in the North District in coming days following a string of robberies that started last Thursday.

"We are doing everything possible to identify the suspects in these cases, and bring a stop to this disturbing trend," said North District Captain Cam McLay." He explained some of the plan:" There will be actions we are taking, like deploying additional uniformed officers into the field, in cars, on bikes and on foot, which you will be able to see. What you will not be able to see are the extra efforts and personnel directed at this effort involving non-uniformed investigative personnel. I, of course, cannot divulge the exact steps being taken for fear of compromising the likelihood of success in the investigation. I assure you there is a great deal being done, and I have confidence in the quality of these efforts."

In all four robbery cases the perpetrator/perpetrators have been riding bicycles. Detectives believe there is a strong likelihood that some of these robberies, if not all of them, are linked. Two cases involve multiple robbers (4 in one case, 3 in the other) where no weapons were seen. Another case involved a single gunman where a shot was fired. The latest case, from last night, involved two robbers, one of whom had a handgun. The victims in all cases were men walking alone between 10:30 p.m. and 12:30 a.m. Details on the four cases can be found by accessing Incident Report numbers: 2010-244473, 2010-245858, 2010-245793, and 2010-250204.

Captain McLay said if citizens see suspicious activities "suggestive of this pattern, notify the Madison Police Department right away." If potential suspects are spotted, people should call 911. Anyone with suspect information should contact Madison Area Crime Stoppers at 266-6014.

Citizens can take steps to help prevent being victimized. These are some of the tips offered by the National Crime Prevention Council and the MPD:

1. Don't walk or jog early in the morning or late at night when streets are deserted.

2. When out at night, try to have a friend walk with you.

3. Carry only the money you'll need on a particular day.

4. Don't display your cash or any other inviting targets such as pagers, cell phones, hand-held electronic games, or expensive jewelry and clothing.

5. If you think someone is following you, switch directions or cross the street. If the person continues to follow you, move quickly toward an open store or restaurant or a lighted house. Don't be afraid to yell for help.

6. Try to park in well-lighted areas with good visibility and close to walkways, stores, and people.

7. Make sure you have your key out as you approach your door.

8. Always lock your car, even if it's in your own driveway; never leave your motor running.

9. Do everything you can to keep a stranger from getting into your car or to keep a stranger from forcing you into his or her car.

10. If someone tries to rob you, give up your property.

11. If you are robbed or assaulted, report the crime to the police. Try to describe the attacker accurately. Your actions can help prevent someone else from becoming a victim.


  • Joel DeSpain, 266-4897