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MSU holds virtual town hall to discuss public safety and answer student questions

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Posted at 9:41 AM, Nov 18, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-18 09:41:14-05

EAST LANSING, Mich. — Michigan State University held a virtual town hall Wednesday night to talk about how they plan to keep students safe.

Last week President Samuel Stanley informed students last week that the surveillance cameras near Yakeley Hall, where Grand Valley State University student Brendan Santo was last seen, was not working the night he disappeared.

Stanley said MSU plans to fix that camera and to install 300 new cameras.

The town hall was an opportunity for people to send in questions about safety and many of the questions had to do with surveillance cameras.

“We are transitioning to a centralized management function that will reside with police and public safety and what that will allow us to do in addition to replacing older equipment," Vice President for Public Safety Marlon Lynch said. "It will also allow us to make upgrades for the existing system and planning going forward.”

He explained that the centralized system will allow equipment to be consistent throughout the university.

Students also asked why the cameras near Yakeley Hall were not working when Santo went missing.

"The summer, we were notified that a component in the camera, a computer chip, was made by an international company that was on the banned list by the federal government," said Vennie Gore, senior vice president for Student Life and Engagement.

The university removed the chips, which disabled the cameras. Gore explained the the delivery of the new chips was delayed every month, so the university decided to replace all of the cameras.

Officials also noted that MSU will be establishing a police and public safety committee and that half of the members will be students.

The university plans to release a safety app next month that will allow students to share their location live with their friends and it will hold emergency contact information.

MSU police have released photos of what Brendan Santo may have had with him the night he disappeared.

Screen Shot 2021-11-17 at 10.42.21 PM.png
Brendan Santo may have had this with him.
Screen Shot 2021-11-17 at 10.42.05 PM.png
Brendan Santo may have had this with him.
Screen Shot 2021-11-17 at 10.41.55 PM.png
Brendan Santo may have had this with him
MSU police
Brendan Santo may have been wearing these shoes
MSU Police release photos
Brendan Santo may have been wearing these shoes.

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