AURORA, Colo. – A sweep of the entire University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus today “went very well” and the campus is operating on its normal weekend schedule, according to University Police.
While University Police have no reason to believe that our students, faculty and staff are at risk, out of an abundance of caution, police walked all buildings on campus and used specially-trained dog teams in a sweep that went from 8 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. today
The continued operation followed the dog team sweeps of Research 1 North and South and Research 2 on Friday. Those operations followed the early morning shootings at an Aurora movie theater. The alleged shooter involved, James Holmes, spent time as a graduate student at the Anschutz Medical Campus. He voluntarily left in June 2012, his building access was then terminated and he was in the process of completing withdrawal paperwork. He is currently in police custody and University Police do not believe he has been on campus since mid-June.
“It went very well,” Deputy Chief Doug Hayes said of today’s sweep. “We just had to make sure that we rested the dogs because they can only do so much at one time. It’s a big campus and we had eight teams.”
The only campus buildings not included in the dog team sweeps were the University Police Department and the Perinatal Research Center on the far north end of campus, which the suspect wouldn’t have had access to, Hayes said.
The specially-trained dogs were provided by Buckley Air Force Base, the U.S. Air Force Academy, Peterson Air Force Base, Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office, Adams County Sheriff’s Office and the Golden Police Department.
Dog handlers and spotters from each of those bases and agencies joined with University Police and representatives of the university’s Department of Environmental Health and Safety to form the eight teams. Personnel from Facilities Management also participated.
“We’ve covered everything,” Hayes said. He noted the Air Force personnel and assisting agency officers “were fantastic” in helping university teams with the sweeps.
In an email to the campus community University Police Chief Doug Abraham said the dogs caused very little disruption to the operation of the campus.
Abraham noted that the closure of East 17th Avenue between Peoria and Oakland streets continues, as area and federal bomb squads have dismantled the first device that was rigged to explode upon entry into the suspect’s apartment. “We continue to be in contact with the incident command and are comfortable that there is no danger to the campus,” Abraham said. “The next step of their process will be a controlled detonation which may be heard around the campus.”
University Police will keep the campus apprised of any changes as they become known.