Nashville college students express concerns after abducted jogger in Memphis


Concerns over college campus safety
Concerns over college campus safety
Published: Sep. 3, 2022 at 10:37 PM CDT

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WSMV) - While the search continues for Eliza Fletcher, the woman who was abducted while jogging near the University of Memphis campus, college students in Nashville have been expressing their concerns for safety on college campuses.

“There are times that I’m out late,” Kayla Piowel, a student at Vanderbilt said. “Especially going to the rec center and things like that.”

Piowel said those late-night walks are always filled with anxiety. And now the anxiety has turned to fear after hearing of Fletcher’s incident.

“We definitely have had scares here and we have systems in place,” Piowel explained. “We have Vanderbilt police and all of that, but clearly you can never be too safe.”

Memphis police said that 34-year-old Fletcher was jogging through the campus around 4:30 a.m. on Friday when she was forced into a dark SUV and driven away.

Students like Robert Waynall said that what happened to Fletcher is beyond scary.

“It’s definitely terrifying to know that crime is this close,” Waynall said.

Just a few months ago, Waynall said that he was car jacked on Vanderbilt’s campus and after hearing about Fletcher, he has been left even more on edge.

In addition, Waynall has been working to keep other students safe.

“I’m a little more cautious of what I’m doing, how people are getting home, making sure Uber has pins and making sure people text me when they get home safe,” said Waynall. “I think that’s just kind of what you need to do these days.”

While police continue their search for Fletcher, Waynall said that sadly people need to be more alert.

“It’s really nice to know that we have a system here that is helpful, but it is still terrifying that things still happen even with those systems in place,” Waynall said.

Piowel said she plans on being more cautious on campus while keeping Fletcher in mind.

“Anything I can do to help promote her and get her face out there I think should really be the focus of everything,” Piowel said.

Students told WSMV 4 that they hope the situation pushes university officials to take a closer look at their security measures.