• Art Jahnke

    Senior Contributing Editor

    Art Janke

    Art Jahnke began his career at the Real Paper, a Boston area alternative weekly. He has worked as a writer and editor at Boston Magazine, web editorial director at CXO Media, and executive editor in Marketing & Communications at Boston University, where his work was honored with many awards. Profile

Comments & Discussion

Boston University moderates comments to facilitate an informed, substantive, civil conversation. Abusive, profane, self-promotional, misleading, incoherent or off-topic comments will be rejected. Moderators are staffed during regular business hours (EST) and can only accept comments written in English. Statistics or facts must include a citation or a link to the citation.

There are 127 comments on Graduate Student Shot

  1. Put cops on the streets of Allston.

    Every night. All night.

    I live there and see none.

    It’s the perfect place for crime.

    The weekend parties aren’t the problem.

    It’s the dead silence on weekday nights.

    Please give us the security we deserve. I want to see cop cars on Chester (shooting over Christmas break) and all the rest.

    1. I work night shifts and walk / bike commute across Allston every night after midnight.

      Let me reassure you that I see police presence in the Gardner / Kelton / Chester Street blocks EVERY NIGHT. They are ALWAYS there. You might not be able to have a visual on their cruiser because they are very good at staying covert, and change their position frequently.

      1. The point shouldn’t be to remain covert. We don’t care about solving these crimes. We want them to be prevented in the first place. Visible police presence is what matters, not covert.

    2. If police cannot be more present, isn’t it possible that maybe BU could set up some of those emergency blue lights in the Allston area? I live in Allston and have to walk alone down Malvern street in the dark almost every night. There are barely any street lamps, and those lamps give minimal light. It’s extremely unsettling as a small female. I absolutely do not feel safe in Allston, and if BPD can’t do anything about it, maybe BUPD can.

  2. My thoughts go to the friends and family of the victim.
    During my time at BU I was lucky enough to live close to SMG, I went to Allston a few times and thought it was rather scary at night.

  3. I agree with “BU student in Allston”. I also live in Allston, and while the weekends feels safe to be out on the streets, weekdays post 10pm is pretty scary. Its the first neighborhood outside BU and many students live there. Please do something abt it.

  4. Why not the government install enough cameras on the streets?

    With 24-hours cameras, those things could be avoided for most of the time.

    1. Are you insane? First off cameras would have no effect on stopping a crime from being committed, does the death penalty stop people from killing? No, then how will cameras? People will kill other people regardless of the consequences. Yes cameras would give the police a suspect much sooner than using police work alone but is it worth it to give up all that liberty and be surveilled 24 hrs a day? No its not. With suggestions like this it’s no wonder personal liberties are being ripped from us and we are moving to a “1984” like state. A 24 hour camera system gives all the power to “Big Brother” and takes it all from the citizens.

  5. Please make some stops in the Allston area for the BU buses. It is only a few blocks away, but many students live in this area, and it is not safe to walk home during the night!!!!!

    1. The 57 bus makes numerous stops in Allston, and the very-much-in-debt MBTA needs the revenue from student passengers. Adding BUs stops in Allston would be superfluous.

  6. I live in Allston and definitely agree with “BU student in Allston” I never see cops in Allston and there are so many streets that at night get very creepy and have dark alleys and have the perfect scene for crime.

    The fact is that on the weekends when there are TONS of students out and about Allston I feel safe and comfortable walking around late at night but weeknights after dark the small and hidden streets of Allston can get scary and very unsafe…

    Please increase cop patrols in Allston on WEEKNIGHTS the dark alleys and hidden streets could use the lime light…

  7. Please put more cops in Allston. Please, protect your students. We did not pay to come here and get killed. My prayers go to the victim and his/her family.

  8. I also agree. The police presence that I did see was mainly on the weekends, and mainly to arrest kids inside their houses for drinking and partying. I know we all broke some rules back then, but that is not where the real danger lies within the community. Me and my friends experienced numerous burglaries, knife-point robberies, and fights throughout our stay in Allston. Never once did the police come to our aid, never once did we feel protected and safe. And yet, we were arrested multiple times for having harmless parties in our own houses by cops who were just angry and looking to bust young kids. We were verbally and physically abused by officers numerous times. There needs to be not only an increased police presence on weekday nights, but a change in the culture of the police force. I did not feel that they were there to protect us at all.

    1. You are not attracting police for no reason. I also live in Allston and there have been more incredibly loud parties from BU students than I can easily count. Your neighbors have to work and often have small children that are hard to get back to sleep. All that being said, they do need to up the patrols especially around Ringer park.

      1. The problem isn’t that they break up parties, it’s that it’s all they seem to do. So many police resources are devoted to breaking up parties and finding a drunk student to arrest, that far more serious public safety risks such as this are ignored.

        1. Breaking up parties is important….a prominent rape culture exists at such parties, and so yes serious crimes happen as a result of these parties. So I think the police do an important job patrolling the streets on weekends. Maybe they seem to only be breaking up parties on the weekends, because that’s all there is to do! If tons of students are out in the streets, it’s much less likely that something like a shooting will occur when there are so many witnesses.

          That being said, obviously it would be great if there could be more police in the Allston area on weeknights. I agree it is scary to walk home at night through some of those streets. I think it would be nice if the BU bus could be extended to drop off students in Allston.

          My heart goes out to the family and friends of the victim…

        2. It seems like all that Allston cops do is to break up parties, but that’s because parties (i.e., noise and alcohol violations) are the most common crimes committed in the Allston area. Allston doesn’t have a huge violent crime problem (although it seems like that trend is shifting).

          We have an alley behind our house that is invisible from the street; it’s a kind of parking lot. One night last semester we could hear screams for help from the alley. All of my roommates rushed out to see what was going on, but by the time we got there, no one was there. We called the police, who of course didn’t find anything either. But of all of the houses on that street, including an apartment building with numerous apartment windows facing the alley, we were the only people who went outside to try and find this woman.

          If you want a safer Allston, do something about it.

          1. A prominent rape culture exists at these parties? Who are you? You think BU kids just throw parties so they can rape women? Please. Before you throw out such audacious claims of a “prominent rape culture”, do some research. Of course rapes happen, but that is just as much a part of the party scene in general than at college kids houses. Rapes happen at, around, or after bars, nightclubs, and music concerts as well. Should we shut those down? Your logic is seriously flawed, and based on false information.

  9. The police here focus on the wrong things – spend less time breaking up loud house parties and more time patrolling Allston on weeknights when there are much less people around. It’s unsettling to know that there are shootings just around the corner and it makes me uncomfortable to know that BU students are in danger walking the few minutes from campus to their houses. This isn’t the first incident where a BU student has died violently and I’d love to see some serious steps taken to ensure that this is the last.

    1. agreed! It’s really silly to spend so much effort on keeping people from drinking in their own homes instead of patrolling what happens outside the safety of a home.

  10. I believe we need more cops as well as better street lighting on campus. Not only in Allston but in other areas a well. I feel very unsafe walking around by myself at night.

    1. And how about more of those emergency blue boxes? It could hurt to put a few in an area so populated by BU students.

  11. I used to live on Comm Ave, near that intersection when I was at BU. It is pretty sketchy, especially at night. I woke several mornings to find blood on my front stoop and the sidewalk in front of my building. Thank God it was only a summer sublet–couldnt wait to move. Take caution people–Very sad indeed.

  12. First of all, as a graduate student at BU who happened to be out last night at the Avenue Bar, less than 3 minutes from this shooting, and who left this bar at 1:30am with a fellow graduate student, this comes scarily close to home. Deepest condolences this man’s friends, family. Terrible.

    I also live in Allston, and agree with all the comments above. I’m a male, 28 years old, and I find the area intimidating at night. It’s dark, there’s weirdos walking around, and with constant news stories about people getting jumped, mugged, etc., I’m constantly watching my back. Sometimes I actually choose not to go out on weeknights (when it’s quiet, dark, and creepy) simply because I feel safer inside.

    *This is unacceptable*

    I resent, very much, the fact that I came here, from another country, to study at the graduate level and I’m literally walking around concerned about my safety–and I’ve lived in a major city, much larger than Boston, for 9 years before this. I didn’t feel that way there.

    I truly, truly, hate this neighborhood. It’s ugly, dangerous, and filthy. I can’t wait to leave.

    1. This man who was murdered… I express my deepest condolences to his family and friends. I hope that justice is served and the criminal is caught and punished to the severest extent of the law.

      I also agree with Ryan, but the city of Boston isn’t concerned with modernizing and safety like they should be. If modern Street lights were installed, better more secure houses built, a city wide ban on dangerous weapons, (which probably already exists but is not enforced)… Who knows if it would make Allston completely safe, but it would be a start.

      As community members we should of course watch our backs. Also let people know where you are; try to go out with friends, not alone. When coming home from work be alert and don’t talk to people. Crime in America is higher than other places, but try to be smart.

      1. I also live in the very near area and find it unsettling. However, there is actually NOT more crime in America, but we incarcerate more people than any other country, not because we have higher crime rates, but because we are extremely punitive, especially regarding drug related crimes.

  13. On Friday night (or Sat 12:30am) this past weekend I saw a HUGE brawl go down on Ashford Terrace. I’m talking like crowd of about 50 people just swinging fists at each other. Living on Ashford, I’m unfortunately used to drunken idiots screaming and throwing bottles, but this was too much. For the first time living here I called BPD. It took them 15 minutes to arrive. By that point everyone was gone!

    I NEVER see BUPD or BPD patrol the “GAP” (as they call it) on weekend evenings. If I do see police, it’s BPD just sitting on one of the side streets of Ashford in the middle of the day. I’ve lived on Ashford for 4 years, and I can count the number of times I’ve seen a BUPD patrol car in the area on my left hand. The Boston police only show up when something destructive happens, like when a Weber grill is thrown from a 2nd floor balcony, and usually 30 minutes late. Although this incident did not happen in the troublesome “GAP,” violent crime is and always has been a problem throughout all of Allston. In order to prevent violence, both BUPD and BPD need to have a more visible presence in the community and step up patrols on the weekends AND weeknights. Breaking up the large, out of control house parties would have a major impact on the amount of violence and vandalism in the area, but regular patrols would hopefully prevent seemingly random acts of violence like this incident from happening so frequently. Stop focusing on busting underagers for drinking; bust the ones who are fighting and trashing our neighborhood!

    My thoughts go out to the victim and his family. It’s disappointing that it takes death one of our own to make the administration aware of its misaligned public safety priorities.

    1. I work night shifts and walk / bike commute across Allston every night after midnight.

      Let me reassure you that I see police presence in the Gardner / Kelton / Chester Street blocks EVERY NIGHT. They are ALWAYS there.

      You might not be able to have a visual on their cruiser because they are very good at staying covert, and change their position frequently.

      1. I’m not so sure this is true. In any case, the neighborhood needs a visible police presence, not a “covert” one. The focus should be on preventing violent crime, not busting petty pot dealers.

      2. I walk around the neighborhood day and night, too. They’re trying to catch people who drive down Gardener and Ashford the wrong way. Almost every time I do see them at any hour of they day they’re playing on their iPhones. My problem is they aren’t actively driving around or even trying to engage the community. Being a VISIBLE and ACTIVE presence is what this area needs.

    2. I know exactly what incident you’re referring to. I was in the house it happened outside of, and it was extremely scary. People inside were saying there was someone with a gun outside, and I believe a few people inside the house called the cops as well. I stayed in the basement hiding for about 20 minutes, then eventually snuck out and walked back to my home on Gardner St. I never saw the cops. This is unacceptable!

  14. I live right down the street and agree with the comments above asking for a more effective police patrol on weeknights. During my time at BU, police would only venture to Allston on weekends to break up loud parties. Since living in Allston, the only indicator of a police presence that I have observed are frequent parking tickets. Allston is getting tougher and with so many off-campus students and grad students, BU can certainly pitch in some money to enforce safety measures.

  15. I’ll say one more thing: back in February at 60 year old woman, walking to work at 6am, was held up at gun point on the corner of Linden and Gardner, almost literally underneath my bedroom window.

    Never heard a thing from BU about it. Unacceptable. She might not be a student, but most people there are. And there’s numerous times I’ve been up early and out by 6:30am, going to the airport, the gym, what have you.

    Completely unacceptable on all fronts–that this even happens, and that no warning was put out by the university.

  16. More police does not mean less crime or more safety. That’s a band-aid solution. And cameras? What? I do not want to be surveilled.

    We need to look at what leads up to people being killed, all the steps before getting to that desperate point, and address those.

    1. you can’t do that if you have no idea who is committing the crimes. More police would definitely mean less crime and more safety! Their presence would discourage criminals because they wouldn’t want to get caught, it would also make the residents feel safer, and it would increase the possibility of the cops seeing crimes and doing something about it.

  17. Strongly agree with people saying Allston is so creepy at weeknights with a few lights. Please install more street lights and put more cops here to protect us.

  18. I agree…BU has made numerous serious efforts to enforce their rules about drinking, partying, etc. but if they focused one half of those efforts on security in allston during the not so obvious times for patrolling it would be a safer place…

    crime happens in allston all the time. That’s scary because most of the people living there are students…living on their own for the first time…

  19. I am also a BU graduate student, live up the road from where this incident occurred, and take the T from that location daily. Me or one of my friends or colleagues could have easily been the victim of this tragedy. It is outrageous that only a few blocks from what is otherwise a safe campus, a student can be shot and killed. Hundreds, if not thousands, of BU graduate and undergraduate students live in this neighborhood, yet the difference in safety on and off campus is astonishing and unacceptable. BU Police are deputized by the county sheriff in order to keep students safe off campus, yet the only purpose I have seen them serve is to issue drinking citations and break up parties. Never once have I seen them patrolling the streets, day or night. This incident occurred right off Comm ave! If one patrol car had passed by the area where this occurred, this may have never happened. Yet only now, ex post facto, are they assigning more patrols to the neighborhood. I believe the BU student body should be appalled by the incompetency and misplaced priorities of our campus police force and administration. If you are not angry about this, you should be.

  20. I’m totally surprised at the comments here. The statistics don’t exactly warrant Allston as a high-crime area, and if you’re concerned that residential areas become unsafe after a certain hour, welcome to reality- this is true of almost any populated area in cities that have no foot traffic at night (since almost everyone is at home). There aren’t many places I’d be meandering about after midnight and feel totally safe outside of the center of the city. The reason that area is cheaper is because it’s further from campus and creature comforts associated with higher populace. It’s not BU’s job to police every place students want to live to save a buck.

    1. I wholeheartedly disagree. Allston has for some time now been considered to have a higher than normal amount of violent crime. And it certainly is BU’s job to keep students safe in areas where a high number of students live. Most of us graduate students are not given on campus housing and therefore must live off campus. BU Police are deputies of the county for a reason, and therefore they have a responsibility to keep students safe on or off campus.

          1. Right, so a lot of people get their stuff stolen. Not exactly what I equate to a dangerous neighborhood.

    2. you don’t live in Allston do you? allston doe shave higher than usual crime statistics and it is almost COMPLETELY a BU student dominated town. There are fraternity ousts in Allston that are associated with BU and that is reason enough for security to take an interest in the town. Allston is also literally only a couple blocks from where BU’s campus ends and as an implied unofficial extension of the campus, it should be treated as such. It is BU’s job to provide security for students especially when they are concentrated in such a small area that is os conveniently close to campus. And this is not “reality” I have lived in many towns and cities in which the presence of the police was enough to discourage criminals. Maybe it won’t fix everything but it certainly wouldn’t hurt

      1. Here, here! Student presence drives up prices. Also, yes, students have the majority when it comes to population, but we shouldn’t forget that families, professionals, what have you, live in Allston as well. It must be pretty shit for them to have all of these college parties and drunken incidents around them.

      2. But actually. I’m moving from Allston to Brookline next year and the rent I pay now is astronomically higher than the rent I will be paying in Brookline. I certainly did not move to Allston to “save a buck” I moved here for the close proximity to West Campus.

  21. BU has a police department devoted to protecting BU students. Stop wasting time and resources breaking up house parties and more time doing your job: protecting us.

    1. No no I think they should increase patrols in dangerous areas but continue with the cracking down of house parties. House parties are not innocent, little get-togethers that SO many people paint them out to be. House parties are where rapes happen and fights start (plus where spoiled BU brats go out to waste their parents investment). Not to mention, house parties are usually distracting to surrounding neighbors (who may be working morning shifts or have children)

      1. Honestly, if you have children, Allston is probably not the place you want to raise them. This is a college student dominated area, and all residents of the neighborhood know it. Expecting college parties not to happen is ridiculous, and these parties are generally far less dangerous than empty, dark streets at night. I have never felt unsafe at a house party. Safety in numbers…

  22. The neighborhood in Allston, although beautiful and peaceful looking during the day, its a different place at night; more specifically the weekends. The alley’s and dark spots are very sketchy. There are clearly illegal activities that occur constantly putting local residents in danger just to walk to their homes or even park their cars. We are calling for more attention to this area and better protection of not only our BU students, but other residents of the area.

  23. PLEASE increase police presence in Allston, as well as allowing the BU Shuttle to have stops in Allston. It can only help! I’m sure all of us students would have no problem with the proceeds from our 3.6% tuition increase go towards such a cause.

  24. This is an atrocity. I do live in Allston and feel relatively safe during the weeknights however there have been crimes here and there which make me question the safety of the neighborhood.

  25. What I would like to see BU do is establish a fund, preferably in the victim’s name and honor, to allocate money towards making Allston a safer place for student’s to live in.

    Obviously the entire neighborhood of Allston is not BUPD’s responsibility, but it would be greatly appreciated if they could monitor the areas (such as Ashford, Gardner, Linden, etc.) where so many of their own students live in.

    I would gladly be the first person to donate money to that fund.

  26. Condolences to this student’s friends and family. I always knew Allston was a pretty rough neighborhood, but I’m hoping this proves to be an isolated incident and that the perpetrator(s) is brought to justice quickly. That said, what can we do about this? More police? The sad truth is that police do not exist to provide personal protection, and they do not have the resources to be everywhere at all times. Cameras? Not in my country, no thank you. The most important tool you have for personal protection is yourself.

  27. This is horrible, but it’s not BU’s fault that someone got shot. Should there be more police, maybe. Would that decrease crime, maybe. Should we not judge something before we get all the facts, yes.

  28. Rumors can be destructive to a community. Please reveal more detailed information as soon as possible. Was this target random? Was it a robbery? Was it because of that person’s race? Was it because of personal grudge? Do we have organized crimes in the area? All these questions need to be answered as soon as possible. Everyone is waiting anxiously.

    1. Agreed, these are very important facts that are needed. It is crucial to know if the student had been targeted for a specific reason or if it was a crime of opportunity with truly tragic consequences.

      The details are key.

  29. This is a terrible tragedy, and my heart goes out to the victim and his family.

    I’ve lived in Allston/Brighton (just up the street from where this incident occurred) for the better part of 10 years and I’m sorry to say that my family has observed a steady increase in violence, crime, and vandalism during that time. Much of this activity, at least in our neighborhood, has unfortunately stemmed from house parties and other raucous activity, so I certainly don’t fault the police for trying to curb this sort of behavior – it is dangerous and destructive and can create the conditions for violent crime or disastrous accidents. Bottom line – if you’re going to go out and have a good time, be smart, be courteous, and be safe. Always have someone walk with you if you go out at night. The police and the University can only do so much, and safety is the responsibility of all of us.

  30. I strongly agree with a BU bus route into Allston. I see the BUS on Linden St. all the time exiting to get on the Pike, anyway, so some stops on Brighton would be enormously helpful to those of us that work/study/practice/lab late at night.

    Perhaps brighter lights would help, but that really won’t stop crime, rather it would bring it to darker corners of the neighborhood. A stronger police presence may help a little, too, but I am weary of the character and culture of the BUPD – while many have the students’ best interest in mind, some just want to get students having harmless fun in trouble. That doesn’t and won’t help anyone. Increasing BPD, rather than BUPD would help the most.

    Cameras? Are you serious?

    Having lived in Allston for a couple of years now, I’m lucky to not have had any accidents. The area I live in is almost entirely students (Pratt-Ash-Gard). The bulk of crime, especially more violent crime, seems to happen in the Ringer Park area by Glenville, Allston St, etc. This area is home to more concerning individuals and is particularly creepy during nighttime hours. THIS is the area that needs focus. I believe landlords should make efforts to help students fill the Allston area up, leaving no room for criminally-bent losers.

    Of course all of this is a symptom of the nightlife in Allston-Brighton with its many bars and clubs. There will always be trouble so long as these establishments are around. I happen to love the vibe almost all the time – it’s so Bohemian and full of character – sometimes highly unfortunate things like this happen. Check the stats all over the city, though, and you realize that these events happen everywhere and it is only possible to somewhat reduce their occurrence. It is mostly the job of Allston-Brighton residents themselves, every one of them, to be safe, always be aware, and always try to reduce crime through their own behavior and influence.

      1. yes, but the 57 goes down Brighton Ave. meaning it still drops many student off very far away from where they actually live, and students must walk alone in the dark to get home. This is unheard of at most universities. It must be stopped!

  31. Last weekend, two BU grad students were mugged and physically assaulted near Packard’s Corner around 2am by what appeared to be three 18 year olds. One of the students ended up in the hospital. It was reported to the cops that night but they did not send out a BU Alert to the community. I am upset they did not inform the greater BU community about the mugging because if everyone was on higher alert there is a small chance this murder could have been prevented. Could it be that the school did not want more bad press? I am also concerned they sent out a BU Alert 10 hours after the student was pronounced dead, it seems as if BU is on PR damage control possibly at the expense of a student’s life. I hope that the BPD and BUPD increase their presence in the greater Allston area and do not withhold any information that would help BU students and Allston residents protect themselves.

  32. I live on kelton street and am used to get off the T at exactly the same location around the same time during weeknights because I often worked late in the lab. But yesterday I was lucky because I forgot something at home so that I had to get back home early. It really felt scary now. Hope the police can do something to enhance the security of this region

  33. There are cops in Allston, but all they do is focus on breaking up (inevitable) parties and drunk students. I think this proves they have bigger fish to fry.

    1. We can blame the cops for being distracted by policing students. We can blame students for causing a distraction and not being responsible tenants. We can blame landlords for letting too many students live in one home and turning it in to a constant party that needs policing. We can blame the city for being too lax on Allston landlords.

      Point is, everyone needs to be doing their part to make Allston safer.

  34. First, my condolences are in order to the victim, his family and his friends.

    As a recent graduate of Boston University and former resident of the cross-street at which this tragedy occurred, I hope and pray that the victim’s death will not be in vain and, in judging from the comments, I think that this incident is shedding light on the socioeconomic factors at play in the neighborhood of Allston.

    The university itself assumes no legitimate responsibility for policing this neighborhood as it falls under the jurisdiction of the City of Boston. So why should Boston University be held accountable for making sure such terrible things do not occur here, a mile away from the western-most border of the campus?

    It is important to realize that many BU students do not reside in Allston by choice. Shelling out $50,000 a year for tuition leaves many students with little expendable money when it comes to choosing housing accommodations. I myself moved to Allston because, simply stated, it was one of the few affordable alternatives that I had to paying thousands upon thousands of dollars, with interest as it were to be financed through student loans, to share a double occupancy room in StuVi. BU is accountable in that its extraordinarily high priced student housing is unrealistic for many who then elect Allston as the next best big for their buck.

    Boston University should commit funds and resources to provide sufficient community policing services to Allston every day of the week, not only the Friday and Saturday nights that yield university punishable offensives and more work for the Office of Judicial Affairs by way of underage drinking and noise complaints at celebrations in houses that do not largely affect the community in comparison to a random act of violence that claims the life of a graduate student.

    Allston is, in fact, a rough neighborhood – one that has enjoyed some economic development and attention in recent years due to the incoming flux of college students and their parents’ supplemental allowances; however, many of the social ills that plague those who have always resided there have been glossed over, largely ignored and merely put aside, as politicos and business owners have focused on (and taken advantage of) the new, wealthier transient demographic that settles in each September 1st for a brief stint contractually obligated through a one-year lease crafted by slum landlords who do not honestly care about the greater good of the community.

    In the few years I spent walking the streets of Allston alone at night, out of necessity en route home from a second or third shift of work, I remember often speed-walking (and even resorting to running on two occasions) the short distance from the MBTA stop at Griggs St. to my residence on Glenville Avenue with family members on the line of my cell phone in case anything should have happened to me in those brief moments of isolation. The streets are dark, remote and mostly empty at night, aside from some dastardly characters that emerge from alleyways and gather in front of residences that house many students to indulge in immoral behaviors. I resorted to befriending the local “crackheads” I so frequently saw on Glenville out of fear that if I were not friendly, they would not be so kind and considerate to allow me to pass without heckling and inciting a fight.

    It is not simply a matter of having adequate street smarts on the part of the individuals involved. That simply isn’t enough sometimes. All the street smarts in the world will do little to nothing to prevent a gun-shot wound.

    I hope the university perceives this not only as a senseless tragedy, but also as an opportunity to demonstrate its commitment to improving public safety for all students, not only those who live on campus or on streets directly adjacent to Commonwealth Avenue. BU sure as hell receives enough tax breaks and other monetary incentives from the City of Boston to increase its patrol in all areas in which its students reside, and if they do not have sufficient information detailing where their students live off-campus, I highly suggest looking into these demographics and addressing the situation appropriately. As an urban school, it is their responsibility to look out for the students who come to receive an education.

    Again, my sorrow is with the BU community and my prayers are with the victim and his loved ones.

    1. COME ON! You should NEVER! EVER! talk on your cell phone while walking through suspicious areas!!!

      1. You are getting attention and BROADCASTING your presence to the threat because you are speaking on a phone. The threat can follow you from a further distance, and still know your location even if you break visual contact.

      2. You are downright distracted. You cannot hear the threat’s approach from behind.

      2. From the tone of your voice, the threat knows your gender, and how “tough” you are.

      3. From your choice of words and accent, the threat can evaluate your education level, and income level, and how much cash you have potentially on you.

      4. The phone ITSELF is a desired item from the robber’s point of view, and you gave out the model of your phone.

      5. You and your family is on the line, therefore you have to HANG UP, THEN call police. Yes. After all YOU have to 911: The person over the phone has ZERO idea of how to describe YOUR situation to the police.
      The 911 call will sound like: How does the suspect look like? Donno. How tall is he? What is he wearing? Donno. I just know the line went silent when I was talking to my son.

      PLEASE don’t talk on the phone!

  35. Hi All,

    How about we set up a neighborhood watch task force to help All of us stay safe.
    this way the more eyes the better, it will help the BUPD…….also dont walk home from anyones house by your self , walk in groups protect your classmates and your off campus friends.

    Don’t get it twisted you DONT LIVE IN A SAFE WORLD any longer. pay more attention of your surroundings SOMEONE Is Always waiting to make you their next victim.

    remember the saying “SEE SOMETHING SAY SOMETHING”
    Sorry for the touch love!

  36. Dear Boston University,

    I’ve lived in Allston for two years, I frequently walk home from campus at 3 or 4 in the morning (hooray engineering!), and I’ve never felt safe doing it.

    A huge number of your students live in this area, and you need to look after them. If certain areas are too dangerous, you can’t allow students to live there. Many of them have only a vague idea of the neighborhood when they move in – the big thing is the cheap rent.

    It’s true that Allston is far removed from your “campus”, but you don’t have much of a traditional campus to start with. If a large concentration of your students live there, you need to provide enough police patrols and other services to make them feel safe. Incidents like these will tarnish your reputation. For the sake of those of us living in these neighborhoods, please consider the following:

    Extend the B.U. Bus to include stops on Packard’s corner and Harvard ave.

    Patrol the neighborhood on weekdays, as well as weekends.

    You are responsible for the safety of your students, regardless of what you call a “campus”. Give us something to work with here.

    1. I get the sentiment, but how would that work? I live in JP, can BUPD patrol my block to keep me safe? Why not? I’m a student, so their job is to keep me safe, right?

      BUPD has a jurisdiction – its the territory they pay property tax on.

      Again, I get what you’re saying, but it just doesn’t work that way.

      1. Um, universities don’t pay property taxes… They are exempt.

        And the point being made is that at some level of concentration or total number of BU students, the BUPD should maintain a sufficiently large presence. We can argue over the exact level, but the principle is still valid.

      2. It actually does work that way at other universities – for example at the University of Southern California the campus police patrol not only the campus but also off-campus in the neighborhoods north and west in a designated “security zone” (notable because two USC grad students were shot last week about a block outside of this zone and there are currently discussions about expanding it). It would require BUPD to be given the authority to patrol and make arrests in surrounding neighborhoods by Boston Police (USC DPS and the LAPD have a Memorandum of Understanding on this), but it should not be impossible to arrange this if BU is sufficiently motivated.

        I do see your point, though, in that this being a college town, students from all colleges live in cheap housing all over, and Allston/Brighton is heavily populated by not only BU students but also BC students, Berklee students, Emerson students, etc. I’d certainly like to see BU take more of an active effort in improving Allston (both for the safety of the students and for the sake of being good neighbors) but it would be interesting to see where they’d draw the line if they chose to do so.

      3. “Territory” according to property taxes? What?

        I was under the impression that educational institutions didn’t pay property taxes. And really, is that the criterion for jurisdiction?

        This makes no sense to me.

    2. Allston isn’t populated by BU students alone. While I am sorrowful that the as-of-yet-unnamed student was killed, something like this could have happened to someone who studies at Emerson or Northeastern, or someone who just works nearby. The University should not be held solely accountable for the safety of its students.

  37. Echo the sentiments of police priorities – harassing students, violating the rights of tenants by entering without permission and writing parking tickets should not be the priority of local police.

    Yes, drunken students (especially of the meathead variety) are responsible for a certain amount of fights and minor property damage, but thugs patrolling the area for easy victims (students living in the city for the first time) find Allston a great place to victimize the local residents, with little obstruction from the BPD. Allston St & Glenville, Linden & Pratt, the footbridge to lower Allston over the Pike… even Comm Ave in the shade under the large oaks there.

  38. I live a block from Allston Street, across Ringer Park. Night after night, fireworks go off in the park, bottles get smashed, and people are out and about (I hear screams on a nightly basis — I cannot tell whether or not they are people in danger).

    Boston Police need to stop ignoring this section of Allston. It is high crime and enough is enough. Get out and do your jobs! I know it’s more fun to threaten BU students at parties, but as a result a graduate student is dead.

    I fully expect to see a presence going forward; I pay taxes to live in this dump too.

  39. The student who was shot was a friend of mine, and it makes me so angry to see how allston st continues to be this creepy scary unsafe lane. He was just a genuine guy trying to get a better education and support his family, and to see how things ended for him is disgusting.
    I really hope that BU tries to do more for the safety of the students, especially considering the kind of tuition we pay. Step one would definitely be adding more stops to the BU shuttle, night patrols etc.
    I hope and pray that his family can deal with this irreparable loss, and that the asshole who shot him gets a lifer and rots in hell.

  40. I agree that the BUS should have more stops. The Brookline PD and BUPD don’t have jurisdiction in Allston but the Boston police don’t have much of a presence. With the number of BU students living in Allston, having the BUS makes stops in the area makes more sense than the BUPD emails reminding us to “be aware while walking at night” after crimes are committed. The shuttles run nearly empty or are parked near FitRec most weeknights, it’s not an unreasonable request.

    It seems like it would be more cost-effective if some of the buses could be rerouted at night–some running from the Medical Campus to Agganis Way and a couple maybe running from Agganis Way to Harvard Ave or Washington Square.

  41. I’ve lived in Allston for about 3 years now (on Chester, Ashford, and now Brighton Ave) and have experienced a mugging right outside my apartment, two break ins, and numerous fights and other squabbles right outside my windows. That’s not to include what my roommates have personally experienced. It’s SCARY. And it’s scary to think that so many of my friends live in this area and we could have easily become the victim of said crimes.

    I’ve only had to call the police once (thankfully) and it took them a full HOUR to show up. What is this?? An HOUR? Might as well have no police at all!

    BU certainly is great at damage control. Just look at all the scandals it has run into this year. No wonder it’s keeping quiet on crimes that are going on right under our noses and threatening the very students that pay to keep it running. B

  42. What I can draw from what’s been said above is that the BU students wandering Allston on friday and saturday nights is actually makes Allston a safe place during those two days. Does BUPD see any irony?

    I wish BU would buy the real estate bordering west campus and “seal it off” in a way, creating some sort of student living campus where BU students could live together in a community. This would make the area a lot easier to keep safe, given only students would have access. BU would make money off this, while still being able to keep the prices low enough for students.

  43. First of all, everyone should be giving their condolences to the victim’s family instead of complaining that the police haven’t placed a crime-free bubble around Allston. Yes, there are violent crimes in Allston, but have you checked the crime statistics in Mattapan, Savin Hill, Dorchester, Mission Hill, need I go on? That’s where the police are every night. This is a city. Cities in general are more dangerous and harder to patrol than smaller towns. Honestly, I work in Copley Square, one of the nicest areas in Boston, and I even feel uncomfortable leaving there late at night. You should always be aware when you’re walking around late at night. And even then, horrible accidents still happen. To blame the police because there wasn’t an officer in that exact location when the incident occurred is ridiculous. In my experience, most BU students I know are not originally from areas that have a lot of crime. Maybe what we need is more self defense education. And as others said, late night BU shuttle stops in Allston would be good too.

  44. I agree with “BU student in Allston.” I used to live on Chester until my house was robbed on Christmas evening. It took the police 2 HOURS TO GET THERE. Meanwhile the robber was in my house locked in my roommates room for God knows how long. Then, after I heard about the shooting on my street a few days later, I knew I needed to move out.

    Now I’m hearing about another shooting just 2 blocks away from my new apartment that I thought I would avoid these things a little bit. I have never seen a cop car patrol in Allston on weekday nights and I work 5 days a week and get home from work around 12AM. The location of this shooting seems as if it wasn’t even in the middle of the street, and close to a T stop. I cannot believe this happened and my heart goes out to the family of this student.

    I live off campus because I cannot afford the housing rates that BU offers. It would be great if this institution started looking out for us students a little more.

  45. As a parent of an International student I have deep concerns about the areas around BU.Unfortunatelly,BU doesn’t have a gated campus.Even the students living in a BU apartment styles aren’t safe.I haven’t seen my son’s apartment but I know it is on a dead end and very empty.His bicycle was stolen in front of the building.I agree with the above students that there should be more cups and control around that area.It is also really scary at night behind the street of Warren.

  46. I’m very sorry to the victim and his family and friends, and believe that these things should never happen but:

    1. You have to wait for more info to come out before you run around blaming the neighborhood, and the lack of cops, and streetlights and whatever.

    2. A lot of you are being completely ridiculous. You live in a city, there are certain dangers associated with living in any urban area. Those dangers will only increase late at night. You cannot depend on the cops to be there on every street 24/7 to look out for you, just because you are a BU student who feels entitled because of the tuition you pay, that is just not possible. Could they do things like add more blue boxes, or lights, okay. but it is not the responsibility of BUPD to act as every students personal body guard. BU’s campus is huge, I’m sure they have enough trouble just monitoring that. It is a choice to live in Allston, I know for some it is a choice driven by money (or lack thereof), but once you make that choice you become partially responsible for your own safety. Obviously things like hour waits for the BPD are unacceptable and should be changed but they are not entirely to blame. In my experience in that neighborhood I feel safe 98% of the time, but in the other 2% you have to take precautions. Personally, I go to school in a neighborhood that is waaaaay worse for crime than Allston, but especially for those of us living off-campus, we are as cautious as possible, and look out for each other, and guess what? Bad things still sometimes happen, this is the real world, it’s not perfect. I’m not blaming anyone here, and really am sympathetic for the victim, this is a terrible thing, but some of you commenters need to relax. There are neighborhoods with way higher crime rates, where people with way less advantages than you BU kids are killed practically everyday, and no one pays it any attention. While it is nice to have a cause to rally around to fight crime, some of you need to take a deep breath, put this into perspective, wait for the facts, see what changes you might need to make, and feel lucky that you are in your current situation. Especially the undergrads, you’re going into the real world soon where BU will not be there to protect you.

    I am not attacking everyone in this thread, most of you are just fine, but to the pitchfork and torch mob forming against BU, calm down.

    Once again my deepest condolences to the victim, his family, and friends.

  47. Think about it: does merely having more police force help if someone simply sneaks into your apartment and tries to kill you? No it doesn’t. The problem is not the lack of police, but the allowance of gun possession. Recently two other students were killed at USC by gun shot, and an uncountable amount of other tragedies like these had taken place nation wide. Again, I believe guns should be banned or strictly restricted.

    You may say if someone really wants to kill you, banning the gun wouldn’t help either, but, at the very least, the degree of wound can be reduced, in that no wound caused by other means is as deadly as gun shot.

    1. So after someone illegally breaks into your house, steals things illegally, threatens you illegally, you think they are going to care about the law banning guns? They will still have a gun, and the difference is that you will not.

      I’m from the midwest and let me tell you that my city almost never has break-ins, because robbers are taking their lives into their own hands once they enter someone’s house who probably has a gun. Would you break into a house if you thought the owner had a shotgun? I sure as hell would not. Banning guns basically just reassures robbers that they won’t run into anyone with a gun once inside a house or apartment. I appreciate the idea, but it is not the right answer.

      1. This is the usual off-the-cuff argument for why gun control laws wouldn’t work, but the fact is that statistics disagree with this argument. Countries with strict gun control laws have fewer homicides, especially gun related. Ofcourse, some people still manage to get guns and still manage to kill people with them, but the numbers are significantly less. This is probably not a completely unbiased source, but a source nonetheless: http://www.gun-control-network.org/GF01.htm
        And don’t forget that the numbers of ACCIDENTAL deaths in households with firearms is rather high.

    2. Sorry, but this tragedy had nothing to do with guns. Crime in the United States has been trending downward for over a decade, and meanwhile gun ownership has grown exponentially and laws have come more in line with a strict interpretation of Constitutional liberties. Crime tends to be the worst in urban areas, which also tend to have the most restrictive laws. Either gun control doesn’t make anyone safer, crime is caused by other factors (think socioeconomic), or both.

      And personally, I’d rather be able to carry on campus and take charge of my own safety rather than passing it off to the BUPD. By some estimates there are two million defensive uses of firearms in the United States per year, so I’d say it’s works.

  48. As an international student, I had no idea what community I would move in when the first time I got here last September. My landlord didn’t warn me anything.
    Then it turned out our house which is located in Pratt Street was broke in during last Christamas when all my roommates and me were out of town. My beongings, such as Macbook, camera, cell phone, all the expensive things were stolen.
    I called 911 and ot took police about 1 hour to arrive, and excpet record what I lost, the detectives did nothing at all.
    And I feel so insucured on my way back home, it’s so dark and silent. I am a girl who is 21, I don’t wanna be shoot and die in a country which is 10 thousands miles from my home.
    Prayers go to the victim’s friends and families. Wish there is no gun shoot in heaven.

  49. I would like give all my condolences to the family and friends of the student. I’ll keep you all my thoughts and prayers. I am a Bu student. This is my second semester at BU. We all need to support each other on and off campus. And also as a community in these hard times.

  50. Here’s another Allston story. A few years ago I was a BU student living on Price Road, just right around the corner from where this tragedy occurred. One night, while a particularly large party was happening in one of the first floor apartments, someone pulled the stairwell fire alarm after 2AM. The alarm was activated in EVERY apartment in the building. Outside, it was even louder than the party. Nothing happened; no police, no firetrucks. After half an hour, I went downstairs and looked at the emergency panel. I found the access key sitting on top the panel and switched to standby mode to deactivate the alarms. Now, the panel would make a loud beeping sound every two minutes and flash a yellow warning light to signal that it was on standby. Well, the building’s emergency system was still on standby mode when I moved out many months later.

    Many parts of Allston feel “off the grid” with respect to city services. Nothing gets repaired, sidewalks stay covered in ice all winter long, and sometimes apartment fire alarms blare out in the middle of the night without any response. I lived in Allston for three years and was witness to many, many assaults and a victim of two robberies.

    I feel for the victim’s family and loved ones.

  51. I am shocked and saddened by the shooting and this comes as my daughter, who is accepted into the class of 2016 seems to be ready to choose BU as her undergraduate school. I am shocked by the comments here and was told by others that BU is a safe campus…now i find out that the BUPD seems to be the usual disengaged beuracracy that is found throughout the country..all this as i am preparing to go into hock to pay the 57,000 tuition room and board…if i may ask the students on here if this feeling of insecurity extends to the west dorms where they tend to house a large percentage of freshman..is this an undesirable area as well? I did get this impression on the tour. And if BU is trying for damage control it is precisely because this is the key decision making time for parents like me…by the way if anyone could tell me the inside scoop on other coverups i would appreciate it

    1. Let me start by saying that this is obviously a tragic situation, and we have no idea as to what could or could not have prevented it. All we can do is offer our condolences for the victim’s family and community. It bothers me that this discussion has turned into what the BU police have done wrong and what the university is “covering up,” when we don’t even yet know what happened. I didn’t live in Allston as a grad student at BU, so I can’t say how dangerous it is other than I know it isn’t the best part of town, but nor is it the worst. But just like any other city, there are rough parts and nicer parts. And just like any other university, rural or urban, crime happens. But this did not happen on the BU campus – do we expect the BU police to patrol every part of town that off-campus students live? Because that is not restricted to Allston. I think this includes that they shouldn’t be wasting there time breaking up off-campus house parties. That is the job of city police in that district.

      If you are concerned about sending your student to BU over this (seemingly) isolated incident, then you are neglecting to realize that things like this can happen at any university. I’m not suggesting that BU is completely innocent here, but they are not clearly at fault either. My advice would be if you are paying ~$1500/mo. on room and board for on-campus housing (is that correct?), you can live off-campus in much nicer parts of town then Allston for the same price, give or take. I lived near the eastern side of campus and felt as safe as you can in a city at night.

      Anyway, the real point of my rant (not necessarily directed at you) is that let’s first show some respect for the victim and his family before jumping to conclusions and playing the “blame the police/university”-card, at least until we know more about what actually happened.

    2. Yes it is shocking to hear this tragic news, but everyone on our campus acknowledges that we are in the city. I hope this one case does not deter your daughter’s decision to come to BU.

      My recommendation is to stay on campus all four years. Yes it may be expensive, but I felt safe all four years I was in the on campus dorms/apartments. The main undergraduate dorms in West have security guards and the area is pretty safe.

    3. Why would you expect BUPD to be engaged in something that occurred at least a mile from the edge of the campus? Take a look at the Allston/Glenville intersection and see how far it is from anything related to BU.

      Coverups? The comments section always brings out people with these types of ideas.

      BU is an urban campus and your daughter needs to be careful. She would have no reason to ever be in this particular residential area. She might travel to Harvard Ave to eat or shop, but I feel safe in that area.

    4. I live in West Campus now, and even though this area is closer to Allston than most others on campus, I can tell you that I have never felt unsafe. I lived in a small town before I came to BU, and my parents were definitely nervous about sending me to school in a city (they had also researched the surrounding areas, and worried about the safety of Allston). If your daughter is aware of her surroundings and doesn’t do anything that would put her in danger when she’s off campus, then I can assure you that she will be perfectly fine. If she does decide to ever live in an off-campus apartment later in college, there are areas like Brookline that are close to campus and very, very safe, albeit a bit pricey compared to Allston. Horrible incidents like this are rare, and my prayers go out to the victim and his family.

      1. thank you all for your responses.. im not naive enough to expect a completely sterile crime free environment in a big urban area…what is important is to learn from the incident and put into place measures that could improve the security of everyone…i.e. i still not have heard the reasoning behind NOT activating the BU emergency notification system as was alluded to in previous posts..certainly the police would have known this was a student rather quickly…only a few hours later i am horrified to think there were students waking up to jog, eat early breakfast and go to early class without knowing that one of their fellow students had to be murdered..it seems as if the alert system is geared towards terrorist attacks..to my knowledge boston has had none of those

  52. BOSTON has one of the highest costs of living in the United States, though it is not a crime free place where students can freely roam around. I know this guy if i am not wrong. He`s a friend of my pal. My heart goes out for the victims family and friends.. Lets end this.

  53. is ikt true that the emergency alert system wasnt used for ten hours? That would be terrible what if this was a crazy person planning to do more shooting in the morning?

  54. Last year, I graduated from BU and moved out of this area of Allston. I currently attend UPenn and am living in West Philly. These crimes are all the more prevalent in a place like that– it’s a real dangerous place to live. But it should be expected, unfortunately.

    Cities have crime. Cities are dangerous. Allston is a part of Boston. Boston is a city. This really shouldn’t have to be spelt out for any of you, but after reading some of these comments in seems necessary.

    But with that said, should anyone have to die just because (like myself) they choose to live in a place like Allston (or worse)? Absolutely not. I feel awful for what happened here. I just think these internet demagogues need to cool it a bit on the rhetoric. This isn’t BU’s fault and it isn’t Boston’s fault– let’s just focus on attempts on their part to diminish these incidents in the future.

  55. Hey all you frightened Allstoners, how about: don’t live in Allston! I have looked several times for apartments over the last five years, and it is *not* that much cheaper. You don’t have to be so close to “campus” – just spend a bit more time on your commute and you won’t have to live in fear.

    1. I dont know what world you live in where finding an apartment you can afford in the city is that easy. And yes, it is nice to be close to campus, especially when some people have to both work and take classes which requires us to begin early and end late. Not every one is filthy rich. Please stop acting as if this victim or any other person that was a victim of crime in allston deserved it just because they didnt have the funds to live in back bay.

  56. I read this incident in a newspaper today. As the newspaper said, victim’s name was Sheshadri Rao,an Indian student from the state of Odisha,India. He was 24 years of age. He was shot in one of his legs and one in head. Poor fellow could’nt help himself because of the gun in the hand of murderer.
    RIP(Sheshadri Rao) and my condolences to his family.

  57. Those on this thread who have defended the rights of students to have loud parties should think this issue through more carefully. First, having loud parties in a residential neighborhood is discourteous to neighbors who work and have children. Police should be applauded for breaking up such parties. Second — and most relevant to this tragic incident — discourteous students drive families and professionals from areas, leading to a less stable neighborhood. It is long-term professionals and working families that effectively advocate for more police presence and community safety. I live in the North End, where we vigorously work with the police to crack down on noise and partying, as well as on more serious crimes. Is it a coincidence we have probably the safest neighborhood in town? I think students can best foster safety by being courteous of their neighbors and help working towards a safe, stable, respectful community in Allston.

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