A Miami University police department (MUPD) substation is now open in the basement of King Library. The King substation will be the second of its kind on campus; the other, located at Yager Stadium, has been in existence since fall 2005. The additional police service point is intended to increase safety in the 24-hour facility and to provide a more secure basement floor, which is the location of a new entrance to the library and coffee shop.
Judith Sessions, dean and university librarian, feels that King Library is the ideal site for the police substation because of the library's location and long hours. "We are in the central part of campus and our 24-hour service means that we have students in and out of the building around the clock," Sessions said. "We believe the substation will help make students feel safe and secure in the building during all of the hours we are open."
The substation, located in 31 King, also allows campus police to be more accessible and available to meet and interact with students.
"We've been looking for ways to be more visible and accessible to students on campus. We really wanted to partner with King Library because it seems to be the place that everybody gathers," said Capt. Jason Willis, operations commander at MUPD. "The substation gives us a chance to not only increase a feeling of safety but to have a more central place to meet with students."
Willis feels that the new substation will be a more convenient location for on-campus students than the MUPD headquarters, located in the Ditmer parking lot on St. Rt. 73. At the King substation students can file police reports, complete witness statements or ask questions and speak with members of campus police.
"We hope that people studying in King will see us as an additional resource and will ask questions and start a dialogue with us," said Willis. "We know it can sometimes be a hassle to come down the hill to the station, so we wanted to go where the students are."
Officers are not specifically assigned to the King station, but are encouraged to come during their regular shifts. Willis said that anytime the library is open there is a chance an officer may be there, either making rounds through the building or working on paperwork in the substation. Because officers are not guaranteed to be in the library at all times, people are urged to call 911 if there is an emergency.