By Tom Mustin
DENVER (CBS4) – Students at the University of Denver are on edge after learning of a violent graffiti tagger stalking the campus.
“It’s a little uneasy knowing someone like that is around our campus,” student Wurth Shurtleff told CBS4’s Tom Mustin.
Samson Whittemore, 32, is a registered sex offender with an extensive criminal past.
Denver police believe graffiti found all across campus, and at the United Methodist Church on University Boulevard, are his work. On Wednesday DU issued a campus safety alert that caught the attention of student Katelyn Pegher.
“Obviously that’s scary for anybody knowing there’s a violent offender on campus,” she said.
Shurtleff has seen the graffiti.
“I’ve seen it around campus,” he told Mustin.
Like many of his classmates, he’s puzzled.
“I would wonder why, I guess. I just don’t know why he would be targeting us,” he said.
After finding the graffiti, DU security contacted Denver police. Police spokesperson Christine Downs says DPD’s graffiti unit quickly flagged Whittemore as a suspect.
“They’re professionals when it comes to taggers and tagging and being able to identify their work, as they call it. This was similar enough to somebody who was arrested in August for doing this somewhere else in the city,” said Downs.
With a disturbing suspect still on the run, students are hoping the tagger’s days are numbered.
“I hope, one, that they catch him quickly and, two, if we all work together, I’m sure he’ll be found quickly, said Shurtleff.
DPD says Whittemore is due in court Wednesday for a previous offense. Denver police say if he shows up he’ll be arrested.