MUPD acquires radar to enforce campus speed limits

Speeding across campus to make a class on time could soon carry a hefty price tag.

The MUPD recently acquired a radar device to catch speeders. Officers will ticket people starting Jan. 5 when they complete training on how to use the equipment.

"It's a very valuable tool, and we need it," said Capt. Earl Burry.

Burry said MUPD is stopping offenders and warning them right now. This is part of the training officers must complete before they can use the radar to give citations.

The device has two antennae, placed on the front and rear of the car. The front one is removable, allowing the officer to hold it at different angles if necessary, said Sgt. Rox Anne Robinson.

The two antennae can pick up speeders from behind the car as well in front, Robinson said.

Police gave verbal warnings to 204 cars on 16 campus streets from Nov. 4 to Nov. 30. Robinson said the cars averaged 14 to 15 miles above the speed limit.

Robinson worked to get the radar, funded by a grant from the Missouri Division of Highway Safety.

Robinson said she stepped up her efforts about three years ago. Robinson said the more accidents there are, the more she sees the need for radar. She said many of the accidents could be prevented if people drove the speed limit.

Radar use will be concentrated in several areas on campus. Burry said the areas targeted for "selective enforcement" are East Campus Drive, South Hearnes Drive, University Avenue, Rollins Avenue, Sixth Street and in front of all university parking garages.

"[Those are] the areas that we're getting most of the complaints from," Burry said.

Burry said he hopes the radar will decrease the number of accidents and complaints on campus. However, he doesn't think the complaints will ever disappear entirely.

"The biggest hope for the department is that it will slow people down," Robinson said.

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