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After Las Vegas Massacre – UM Tightens Security for Homecoming Week

photo courtesy of UM Police Department
Marty Ludemann

Following the worst mass murder in U.S. history in Las Vegas on Sunday, institutions throughout the country are reexamining their security procedures, including the University of Montana.

UM Police Chief Marty Ludemann said he has had discussions with his staff, going over campus security, especially with Homecoming in less than a week.

“We’ve done some different things this year that we’ve never done before,” Ludemann said. “We’ve started barricading into our tailgate area trying to  make sure that it is safe for people to come watch the games. We’ll still do the bag checks, sweep the stadium with our canines for explosive devices and anything related to gunpowder.”

Ludemann said several other agencies have always been willing to assist in security, such as the Montana Highway Patrol, City Police and Sheriff.

“We’ve talked a little bit about what happened in Las Vegas, and the potential of maybe putting some lookouts on some of our taller buildings here on campus during the event,” he said. “You probably won’t see any real outward signs that we’re doing anything real different, but, as a team, we evaluate procedures to see if we can get everything a bit safer.”

Ludemann said Homecoming always presents unique challenges.

“Being Homecoming, we’ve got the parade and we’re going to have a lot of people, but it gives us a good week to discuss things and be prepared,” he said. “What fans and campus residents can do to help is to keep their eyes open, and if you see something unusual, grab a security person in a tan shirt and just say something to them. If you see something, say something, that’s what we’ve been telling our campus for the last couple of years.”

Ludemann’s message? Look out for each other, take care of each other, and that’s what makes for a safe campus.

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