Second Burglary This Month Reported At Granville Towers

The UNC Department of Public Safety needs your help in the investigation of a burglary at Granville Towers Tuesday.

Alert Carolina posted an informational message about the reported burglary in a room in Granville Towers West. The resident of the room told UNC DPS Wednesday that she noticed $450 in cash was taken from her wallet. Currently there is no suspect information available.

This is the second reported burglary in Granville Towers this month. On July 4, another female resident of Granville Towers East said she woke up to find her door open, her purse and wallet spread out on the floor, and her money missing.

Police released a photo of a man wanted in connection with that incident.

If you have any information regarding either incident, UNC DPS asks you to call 911 or CrimeStoppers at 919-942-7515. Calls to CrimeStoppers are confidential and anonymous, and the caller may be eligible for a cash reward for information that leads to an arrest. You can also leave tips for CrimeStoppers at

UNC Emergency Siren Test Postponed

CHAPEL HILL – The emergency siren and text message test on UNC’s campus is being postponed due to the threat of inclement weather.

The emergency system test was scheduled to take place between 2:00 and 3:00 p.m. on Tuesday, but that is a time when inclement weather is projected to move into the area.

Department of Public Safety Chief Jeff McCracken said he was concerned that the test may cause undue confusion, especially if an actual alert message has to be announced.

The new test date has not yet been determined.

UNC DPS Investigating Sunday Armed Robbery

CHAPEL HILL – The UNC Department of Public Safety is in search of a suspect or suspects who robbed a male UNC student of a small amount of cash near campus Sunday.

The student told police he was struck in the face with an unknown object. He was in the area of downtown Chapel Hill or northern campus. He wasn’t able to provide a description or number of suspects, but UNC DPS says an ongoing threat to campus is not suspected in connection with this case.

UNC Police are asking anyone with information which might aid in the investigation to contact investigators at 919-962-8176. You can also contact Crime Stoppers at 919-942-7515.

Two Grimes Hall Residents Robbed

CHAPEL HILL – Imagine walking in on a robbery in progress or returning home to find your possessions stolen.

That’s what happened at the UNC Grimes Residence Hall Wednesday at around 1:15 p.m.

Alert Carolina and the UNC Department of Public Safety are asking for your help in providing information about the breaking and entering which resulted in the theft of two wallets. A suspect was reportedly seen as a black male between 25 and 30 years old, 5’10” to 6 feet tall, and weighing between 160 and 170 pounds.  He was seen wearing a black, down-fill styled coat, black pants, and a plain, black baseball cap.

Anyone with information is asked to call the UNC Police Department at 919-962-8100 or contact the Chapel Hill-Carrboro-UNC Crime Stoppers at (919) 942-7515. Calls are confidential and anonymous.

You can also submit information to Crime Stoppers online at

Police Dogs Play Key Role In Drug and Bomb Detection

CHAPEL HILL – Local law enforcement keep the community safe but they don’t do it alone. Working alongside the officers are the dogs of the K-9 Units. They hunt-down suspects, search out drugs and detect bombs.

“It’s vital to the safety of all of our officers,” said Sergeant Gabe Shinn of the CHPD.

“It’s crucial that we have the dogs to find somebody hiding somewhere, particularly if they want to do us harm. Dogs can sniff out suspects hiding in a wooded-setting, in buildings, or anywhere really. The dogs have the ability to detect that odor long before we see that person—because we may not see them,” he said.

Shinn says the CHPD has three drug-detecting and pursuit trained dogs with a keen sense of smell that’s more significant than their ferocious bites. They are not trained in bomb detection.


Environmental conditions can throw the dogs’ scent-tracking skills. It’s easier for them to pick-up a trail in colder conditions. When it’s hot, Shinn says it’s crucial for the dogs to get to a crime scene as soon as possible because odors will dissipate quickly.

“We want to use the dogs anytime we can. It’s an unpredictable job. We don’t know what we maybe walking in to. We don’t know what may be waiting around the corner,” Shinn said.  “It’s better for us to know it before hand than to find out when we are right on top of it.”

The dogs can also move fast. Shinn says in a foot-chase situation, he has never seen a suspect out-run a police dog.

The CHPD’s three dogs are named MJ, Jax, and Kernie; MJ lives with Shinn, and the other dogs live with officers as well. Shinn explains this encourages strong relationships between the dogs and their handlers.

CHPD has the budget for a total of four dogs. With MJ is retiring soon, Shinn says they’ll bring-in two more dogs sometime this year.

But police dogs are expensive, costing upwards of $10,000. However, the CHPD’s dogs were bought from private donations.

Shinn says police dogs are usually brought over from Europe, the breeds being German and Dutch Shepherd, and Belgians Malinois.

The dogs complete 14 weeks of training before going out in the field. They additionally train every week to keep their skills refined.

Bomb Detection

The UNC Department of Public Safety’s K-9 unit is made-up of Buddy, who’s been with them since August of 2007.

Buddy specializes in bomb-detection.

Randy Young of UNC DPS explains their K-9 Unit began in 2004. Young says like other police dogs, Buddy is great with people but is all business during high-profile community events like football games.

“He’s also extremely professional when he needs to be and is viewed as just like any of our other officers here,” Young said.

Buddy is trained in the identification of 25-30 different chemicals essential in most explosive devices. UNC DPS lends him out to other jurisdictions for big events.

His handler, Officer Jeff Mosher, trains Buddy twice a month.