Late last night, the University of Central Florida was on alert after reports that a man with a weapon was spotted on campus. The news spread from the on-campus community, to UCF police, then on social media and finally to the press as everyone was notified of the potential threat.
The weapon turned out to be a BB gun, but last night’s alertness of a potentially deadly situation proves that “see something, say something” isn’t just a phrase, but the best way to stop danger before people get hurt.
It’s a philosophy that we must continue to promote.
While the university and it’s police department continue to implement new technologies such as license plate scanners (story HERE) to keep the community safe, nothing will replace an awareness among thousands of students of their surroundings and a cell phone.
We also must tell them it’s okay to let law enforcement know if they see anything suspicious. Sometimes, younger adults will be a little apprehensive to talk to cops, because they might not be sure of what they saw or because they might have had a bad experience in the past. We can’t let that stop them.
I had the opportunity to watch it all unfold last night online. If it wasn’t such a frightening situation, you would have been able to sit back and admire just how efficient the flow of information was. Bad guys will think twice if they know how strong the UCF community can be when they’re on the lookout.
And it’s something the rest of the Orlando area can learn from as well.
“If you see something, say something.” It’s more than just a phrase when the philosophy is applied the way it was last night. Its a potential lifesaver.