University of Cincinnati debuts 'Bearcat Guardian' safety app

Posted at 4:30 AM, Aug 31, 2017
and last updated 2017-08-31 07:02:26-04

CINCINNATI -- It's been a few weeks since University of Cincinnati students got back on campus, and now the university has a new app to help keep students safe.

UC Police Chief Anthony Carter said they generally see spikes in thefts at the beginning of the school year. Getting students to look out for each other can reduce the numbers.

"If you're at the library and somebody's getting ready to get up from a table and they start to leave their objects, maybe remind them," he said.

Students can also download the new Bearcat Guardian app. Users can call 911, text a message to UC public safety or set a safety timer so a friend can track their route home or to a class. They get an alert if the user doesn't show up.

A reporter found some students who weren't aware of the app, but those who have it say they're using it.

"Every night, my roommate tracks me when I'm done with swim practice to make sure I get back to our dorm OK," freshman Victoria Coy said.

Coy said it makes her feel safer on campus.

The app also allows students to send in anonymous tips to campus police, including pictures. Faculty can also use the app.