March 10, 2015
Communications and Media Relations Coordinator
Robbery Report Leads to Arrest
VALDOSTA — The Valdosta State University Police Department has determined Monday’s report of an armed robbery to be a false one.
Matthew Tito, 21, of Snellville, has been arrested and charged with the false report of a crime and giving false statements. As of Tuesday morning, he was in the Lowndes County Jail.
Dr. William J. McKinney, VSU president, issued a statement Tuesday morning thanking the university’s police officers “for their diligent work on this and all matters dealing with the safety of our campus community.”
Around 2:30 p.m. Monday, VSU police issued an alert regarding a robbery near the intersection of Toombs Street and Brookwood Drive. Initially the call came in as an armed robbery but was later amended to an unarmed incident. A thorough investigation of the incident throughout Monday evening led to police declaring the report to be false and Tito’s arrest.
The VSU Police Department is committed to doing all that is possible to build an environment that promotes a feeling of safety and security. Police officers patrol the campus 24 hours a day, seven days a week. They protect life and property, preserve the peace, prevent and repress crime, investigate reported offenses, apprehend offenders, enforce regulations and laws relating to traffic control, collect and preserve physical evidence, prepare cases for court prosecution or disciplinary action, recover lost and stolen property, provide general police services to the university community, and establish and maintain an enforcement policy which is consistent with the requirements of the law and with the best traditions of a democratic society.
The VSU Police Department offers a variety of crime-prevention programs and information sources to help the university community deal with safety issues. One such safety initiative is the police escort service. This program provides additional protection to all university faculty, staff, students, and visitors while walking around campus. It is in operation around the clock, and officers are prepared to provide a walking escort to any member of the VSU community to any location on campus upon request. Those who wish to utilize the service should simply dial (229) 333-7816 or use one of the emergency phones located throughout the campus.
Immediate police response is available by calling the emergency number at (229) 259-5555.
VSU also encourages its faculty, staff, students, and visitors to follow SAM, the campus’s Safety Awareness Mascot, on Facebook (Valdosta State University Safety Awareness Mascot) and Twitter (@VState_SAM) for tips designed to help ensure their safety and well-being.