EMU police: Surveillance video led to discovery of false armed robbery report
The Eastern Michigan University student who falsely claimed he was robbed at gunpoint Friday evening on campus retracted his statement Saturday after police revealed there was no surveillance footage showing the robbery, said EMU Police Chief Bob Heighes.
"We re-interviewd the victim and some of the information he shared with us did not coincide with what we had on our video cameras," Heighes said. "When that was shared with him, he retracted his statement."
Police posted a crime alert Friday after the 21-year-old student reported he was robbed by four men with a handgun at about 6:30 p.m. in the Green Lot, on the northern edge of campus near Huron River Drive.
The student told police the men demanded his money and he gave them his wallet. The student said he was punched in the face before the men fled.
Heighes said the parking lot has several cameras and none of the footage backed the student's claims of being robbed. Heighes declined to share the reason the student made the false claim.
"Those are the kind of details I don't want to get into until after we take it to the prosecutor," Heighes said.
Heighes said the report was forwarded to the Washtenaw County Prosecutor’s office for review Monday and he isn't sure when the review will take place. Authorities are not yet releasing the student's name.
If the prosecutor moves forward with the case, the student would likely face charges for filing a false police report and Heighes said the university will seek sanctions as well.
The Student Conduct and Community Standards office has reached out to the student to schedule a meeting, Heighes said. The student could face dismissal from the university.
Heighes said his office doesn't receive false reports often, but when he does, it's something that is taken seriously.
"False reports are a drain on (everyone's) resources and something we actively pursue with the prosecutor," Heighes said. "These are serious matters when you make accusations... The repercussions set the whole campus on edge and there are huge consequences when you make these types of reports."