After class, college students often look forward to going in town to eat, to the bar, a party or maybe just to a friend’s house to hang out. The last thing we think of is getting robbed or being assaulted; this is not something that is often heard about in West Chester. During the fall of 2005, there were two incidents in West Chester where a group of people robbed students and non-students. Corporal Scott Whiteside of the West Chester Police Department took time out of his schedule to discuss these incidents.
He stated that neither of the groups were gangs nor were they targeting intoxicated people. These were some of the rumors that we going around involving these incidents. The victims of the robberies were randomly selected and not all of them were students who attend the university. A handful of the robberies occurred near Baxter’s bar, in town.
The first set of robberies was committed by people who resided in a house on the 500 block of S. Walnut Street. Not all of the people who lived in the house were involved in these crimes or attended the University. One person involved was actually a former student from nearby Cheney University. Parents of students who lived on this block often called the police to complain about the residents. Their landlord had problems with them, as well. Drugs sales were taking place inside the house. Whiteside stated that they were able to get a search warrant for the house. While searching the house for drugs, they found several wallets that had been reported stolen. Weapons were used to commit some of these crimes. He was happy to say that arrests were made and they no longer live in the area. Residents who live on this block are relieved that they are gone. They can enjoy their block and feel a lot safer.
Shortly after the first set of incidents, another group from Coatesville between the ages of 16-20 robbed a few people in the area. According to West Chester police, there was no connection between the two groups who committed these crimes. Arrests were made involving these incidents as well. The university police as well as West Chester police department worked together to get to the bottom of these cases. Since these incidents, there have not been any reports of similar styled robberies.