Archived Safety Alerts

September 23, 2019

6:37 p.m. update - The gas leak in Chemistry Stores has been shut off and the building is safe.

5:45 p.m. - Natural gas leak in the Chemistry Stores building near Skaggs. Emergency agencies are on the scene. Please stay clear of the area.

June 18, 2019

7:58 a.m. - Local area law enforcement are working both sides of the river near the Kim Williams trail and dog park looking for a possible armed subject. Please stay clear of the area.

8:25 a.m. update - Suspect has been located. There is no further threat to campus.

June 4, 2019

Missoula PD and UMPD have received a report of an incident which occurred late last night in a residential area near the UM campus. A female reported walking from her vehicle to her residence at approximately 11:00 p.m. when an unidentified male “jumped from the bushes and attempted to grab her arm.” The victim began screaming and the suspect ran away. He is described as a white male, 5’9”-6'0, 200 pounds, wearing a black sweatshirt and blue jeans. A report was made to MPD immediately after the incident and UMPD was alerted this morning. Police responding to the area were unable to locate a person matching the description provided by the victim.

This incident occurred in the 600 block of 6th Street East, which is within the UMPD expanded patrol jurisdiction. Because of the proximity to campus, this alert is to inform you of the incident and ask that you contact UMPD by calling 243-6131 if you have any information related to this matter.

April 18, 2019

University of Montana Police are investigating an incident involving a student bringing a firearm into a residence hall and allegedly discharging it out of a residence hall room window. No injuries were reported and there was no damage beyond tears in the window screen in the room where the firearm was discharged. The student is facing criminal charges and disciplinary action as a result of this incident.

UMPD continues to investigate, coordinating with the Missoula Police Department. We do not believe there is an ongoing threat or safety concern for the campus community.

The University has a clear, strict policy regarding firearms anywhere on the campus. It specifically states:

The University of Montana restricts the possession and use of firearms on the campuses of the University of Montana. Individuals authorized to carry firearms without prior approval from the President or Chief of the University of Montana Police include:
  • Peace officers
  • Federal authorities who are empowered by federal law to be armed

Students living in residence halls or UM Housing facilities must store any firearm with the University of Montana Police and follow mandatory requirements for possession. All residents of the University Villages and Lewis and Clark Villages must register any firearm with UM Housing.

If you have questions regarding University policy as it relates to firearms on the campus, please do not hesitate to contact UMPD at 243-6131.

April 8, 2019

Missoula Police are investigating the suspicious death of a 46-year-old female, whose body was found last night in the area of East Broadway and I-90. The deceased is not a student or employee of the University. No further details are available. The proximity of the incident to the campus and the ongoing investigation is prompting UMPD to issue this alert. 

The safety of our campus community is always our highest priority. We will notify the campus about emerging incidents and provide all available information to assist MPD with their investigation and to create a heightened awareness about potential safety concerns for our community.  Please contact UMPD at 243-6131 or call 9-1-1 if you need assistance or have any information related to this matter.

April 2, 2019

Last night, after midnight, UMPD received a call from a female student who reported leaving the library and being chased by an unidentified male described as about 6’ tall, wearing dark sweatpants and a gray hoodie. The student encountered the male near the coffee kiosk by Urey Lecture Hall. The student was able to run to a residence hall and called police. UMPD is investigating and anyone with information or having experienced a similar incident is asked to call 243-6131.

UMPD wants to remind everyone about GrizWalk, a free service offered to any community member who wants to be escorted to their car, other buildings or anywhere on campus. GrizWalk provides safe walking or driving escorts anytime between dusk and dawn. If GrizWalk is unavailable, a UMPD officer will provide the same service. This service is available seven days a week during the academic year.

Also, please know that UM has 17 emergency telephones across campus. The phones glow green at night and pressing the call button puts you in direct contact with UMPD, with your location immediately known. Do not hesitate to use the emergency phones or to contact us if you are feeling unsafe or need assistance. If you have experienced an incident or feel unsafe or threatened, the Student Advocacy Resource Center (SARC) can provide confidential assistance. Call 243-6559. The safety of everyone on the campus is our highest priority and UMPD is eager to provide assistance at any time.

February 20, 2019

UMPD has received multiple reports of a phone scam where the call appears to come from the main UMPD number (243-6131). The caller claims to have an arrest warrant and requires a credit card number to pay a fine. Please know that UMPD does not make notifications in this manner and would never ask for a credit card or other personal information over the phone. Please make a note of this and contact UMPD if you have any questions. Protect your data and never give out credit card information over the phone. 

September 18, 2018

UPDATE: The chemical spill in the Chemistry building has been cleaned up and all is clear.

There has been a small chemical spill on the third floor of the Chemistry building. There is NO IMMINENT DANGER to students, staff or faculty. Missoula Fire Department and a hazmat team are on scene for cleanup.

March 23, 2018

UPDATE: UM Police are still searching for a vial containing potassium cyanide that was removed from a University research laboratory (see March 7 alert). The material is a white powder, occupying less than half the volume of a clear glass vial with a white lid. If you come across a vial that looks similar to the one in this photo, please contact 911 immediately. Do not handle the vial.

clear glass vial one inch in diameter with white lid containing a white powder

March 14, 2018

University officials have received a report of a student assault which occurred today in the Eck (Liberal Arts) building. A male student was assaulted by an unknown male in what appears to be hate/bias violence. The incident occurred in the men’s restroom across from room 102 on the main level. UMPD is aware of this report.

Members of our campus community should be aware of this incident and the fact that the assailant is unknown at this time. Anyone with information is asked to contact UMPD at 243-6131. Information can be submitted confidentially and/or anonymously.

March 7, 2018

The Missoula Police Department and the University of Montana Police Department are investigating the report of a small amount of a toxic substance (potassium cyanide) removed from a university research laboratory.

The material is a white powder, occupying less than half the volume of a clear glass vial with a white lid.  It was possibly discarded in the area somewhere within the confines of Orange Street to Hickory and Cregg Lane to S. 6th Street W.

At this time it is not certain if the vial was discarded, but if it was, it could be in this area.  Officers have checked the area but did not locate the vial.

As a precaution, law enforcement wants to alert residents and those who may be in the area. If located, contact 911 immediately and do not handle it.

This is an ongoing joint investigation by the Missoula and UM Police Departments; additional information will be shared as it becomes available.

March 6, 2018

UPDATE: March 7, 2018 - Arrests Made in Shooting Case

The UM Police Department received information related to the shooting incident which occurred in the early morning hours on Tuesday, March 6. The information was provided to MPD Detectives which led to search warrants being served on the UM campus (Miller Residence Hall) last evening.

As a result, the persons involved in the shooting, and other possible accomplices, were identified, located and subsequently interviewed. The two suspects are identified as Ivory Brien (19) and Chase Munson (18). Brien, a UM student, will also be referred to the Dean of Students for action.

The investigation continues, but there is no public safety threat to the community or to UM students or staff. The UM Police Department, Missoula Police Department and the Missoula County Sheriff’s Department will continue to follow up on new information or leads in this incident. Anyone with information is asked to contact the Missoula Police Department.

Coordination between local law enforcement agencies has been instrumental in locating and arresting those involved as quickly as possible. Further information will be available through the Missoula County Attorney’s Office tomorrow, when charging documents have been completed.


TIMELY WARNING: The University of Montana Police Department would like to share the following information from Missoula Police on an incident that occurred near UM Athletic facilities and University Villages early morning today.

Public Information Office
For immediate release:
Date: March 6, 2018
Contact: Sergeant Travis Welsh
Phone: 406/552-6290

MPD Investigating Shooting Incident

At 3:48 am this morning, Missoula Police Officers responded to the report of shots fired at a convenience store in the 2400 block of S. Higgins Avenue. Upon arrival the officers learned that two suspects had entered the store; one of them brandishing a firearm. They also learned that two individuals had been shot. The two suspects had fled the store prior to officers’ arrival. Both adult male victims were transported to the hospital where one was treated and released.

One suspect was described as being taller than 6’0, muscular, and wearing a dark colored hoodie. The second suspect was described as being shorter, also wearing a dark hoodie, and brandishing a firearm.

If anyone has information to identify the suspects, or can otherwise aid in this investigation, please contact either Det. Ben Slater (406) 552-6282, or Det. Mitch Lang (406) 552-6292.

January 30, 2018

UPDATE 1:52 P.M.: The suspect in today's manhunt by local law enforcement has been apprehended and is in custody. The Missoula College lockdown has been lifted and the Kim Williams Trail is open.

UM ALERT: Missoula law enforcement have alerted UMPD that they are pursuing a male federal fugitive in East Missoula. Man is armed and described as wearing a black jacket with a skull on the back and possibly a mask. He may proceed along the river corridor into Missoula. As a precaution, the Kim Williams Trail adjacent to campus is closed. Missoula College will also be on lockdown as a precaution. Please be on the lookout and call 911 if you see someone matching this description.


Suspect Description:

  • William “Billy” Dale Newhoff
  • White Male
  • Blond Hair
  • Wearing glasses, black hoodie and gray pants

Additional Information: Suspect is believed to be ARMED AND DANGEROUS. Photo and updates are being provided by Missoula County Sheriff's Office on Facebook.

1:15 P.M. Missoula law enforcement continue to search for the man identified earlier, which prompted closure of the Kim Williams Trail and lockdown of Missoula College. At 1:10 p.m., the decision was made to lift both the lockdown and closure as the search continues. Authorities do not believe the suspect is in the area of Missoula College or the University. However, all are asked to be on the lookout for the suspect, identified as William “Billy” Dale Newhoff. Newhoff is considered armed and dangerous and should not be approached. If you see him or someone matching his description, call 911 immediately.

January 17, 2018

3:00 P.M. UPDATE TO JANUARY 11 TIMELY WARNING: UMPD has been conducting extra foot patrols to all buildings on campus. We have not located the suspects identified in this incident. Extra patrols will continue. Please notify UMPD dispatch at 243-4000 if you have any concerns or to report suspicious activity.

January 11, 2018

TIMELY WARNING: UM Police received a report of two men accosting a female student in the Music Building. The incident happened around 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 10, in basement practice room 7D. The men entered the room, blocked the doorway and made inappropriate sexual comments. They offered alcohol and badgered the woman for her phone number. This aggressive behavior persisted until she managed to leave the room and reach a hallway with another student. The two men then left and have not been located. They are described as white, between 18 to 30 years of age, and wearing dark colors. One had short blond hair and was about 6 feet tall. The other had long brown hair, blues eyes and was shorter.

The student submitted an online report about the incident, and UM Police learned about it Thursday morning. Officers plan to do extra patrols in the area. Please be aware of your surroundings and call UM Police if you see anything suspicious. Anyone with any information should call the UM Police Department at 406-243-4000.

UM’s Student Advocacy Resource Center (SARC) is available by calling 406-243-4429 for those experiencing unwanted physical, sexual, emotional or social coercion. For your safety, UM police offer Griz Walk by calling 406-243-2277, providing you with a walking or driving escort around campus anytime between dusk and dawn. Anonymous reports also can be made to the UM Police Department. In addition, the UM Title IX office responds to reports of discrimination and harassment, including sexual violence. For more information call 406-243-5700. Updates regarding this incident will be posted as they are available.

February 7, 2017

University officials have received reports of individuals becoming ill after drinking in downtown bars. Those affected indicated concern that the drinks were drugged. This is a general reminder for our students to be aware of their surroundings, watch their drinks and watch out for each other. Several resources exist for students with safety issues or concerns, including UMPD, Curry Health Center Counseling, and the Student Advocacy Resource Center (SARC). The SARC 24-hour support line is 243-6559.

January 31, 2017

The current weather conditions are making roadways extremely slick and dangerous. Please reduce your driving speed significantly. When parking on roadways around campus, park as close to the curbs as possible. The plowed snow is reducing the width of the roadways. Connell, Eddy and Campus Drive are the bus route streets; please give as much room as possible so the buses can travel safely.

Please remember to park at least 20 feet from entrances to pedestrian walkways, parking lots and streets to ensure visibility and safety.

Thank you and be safe — Marty Ludemann, Chief of Police

November 2, 2016

UM officials have been notified by the Missoula Police Department of a report of an assault which occurred early this morning in the area of University Villages housing near the UM Golf Course. The victim is safe. Missoula PD is investigating leads. More information will be available here. Campus safety information and resources are available on the Campus Safety website.

11/4/16 update: Missoula Police continue to investigate this report of an assault. There is no new information available at this time.

11/22/16 update: The Missoula Police Department has concluded its investigation and has found no evidence to confirm that a crime was committed.

October 19, 2016

The University is aware of a report of non-stranger sexual assault that occurred in UM residence halls. Residence hall students are encouraged to be alert regarding non-resident visitors in the residence halls. Campus safety information and resources are available on the Campus Safety website; additional student support resources include SARC (406-243-6559), Curry Health Center Counseling Services (406-243-4711), UM Police emergency (406-243-4000 or 911), and UM Police non-emergency (406-243-6131). The University will release more information as it becomes available.

September 15, 2016

Missoula County Health Department has confirmed an off-campus case of Hepatitis A in Missoula. Individuals may have been exposed to HAV if they consumed food from the self-serve salad bar of the Good Food Store between August 15 and September 13, 2016. See the Missoula City-County Health Department news release for more information.

June 11, 2016

Missoula Fire Department and University Police responded to a structure fire in University Villages at 2:47 p.m. today. The fire was quickly extinguished. No people were harmed. Fire officials are currently investigating the cause.

September 12, 2015

Early this morning a male entered a house in the University district and committed a sexual assault. Missoula Police are investigating. Please take appropriate safety precautions and contact UMPD at 243-4000 or Missoula PD at 552-6300 with any information.

August 26, 2015 – Extreme Fire Danger Notice

Due to the extreme fire condition in Missoula County, the following activities are prohibited until further notice:

  • Smoking on any campus property or M trail
  • Building, maintaining, attending or using fire or campfire

Remember that camping and the use of fireworks are prohibited year round on city property. These restrictions will remain in effect until there is a significant long term change in fire danger. Thank you for your help in keeping our community safe.

– Marty Ludemann, Chief of Police

March 10, 2014

Due to rocks and snow sliding off Mount Sentinel, do not park on the east side of Campus Drive next to the mountain. The M trail is closed until further notice.

3:49 p.m. update: After an inspection by a geologist, the M Trail and Campus Drive have been reopened at the University of Montana. They had been closed by a rock fall. Some parking near the mountain may still be cordoned off.

March 6, 2014

Avalanche danger has subsided and Mount Sentinel is now open to foot traffic, including the M trail. Mount Jumbo remains closed.

March 3, 2014

Due to considerable avalanche danger, please stay off Mount Sentinel and the trailhead area.

February 28, 2014

9:12 p.m. update: Due to high avalanche danger, please stay off Mount Sentinel and the trailhead area.

5:25 p.m. update: UM campuses remain closed tonight except for the Harlem Globetrotters performance. Normal campus activities are scheduled to resume Saturday morning at 10, including any activities at Missoula and Bitterroot Colleges. We are planning normal hours of operation after the 10 a.m. opening. Please stay off campus if possible, as crews are working hard to clear all parking lots, roads and sidewalks. ASUM's UDASH Gold Line service is expected to resume Saturday night at 7:05. The men's basketball game against Southern Utah is on schedule.

Due to winter conditions, University of Montana, Missoula College and Bitterroot College classes are canceled. All but essential staff should stay home.

  • The Harlem Globetrotters event at the Adams Center will still go on.
  • All other evening events, including the President's Lecture Series, are canceled.
  • The UC will close at 2 p.m. today.
  • The Food Zoo will remain open for its normal hours.
  • ASUM bus service is canceled for the remainder of the day.

If you are off campus, please stay home. The Mountain Campus is closed to all but these essential services: Food Zoo, University Center, Public Safety, and Curry Health Center for student emergencies only. Missoula College and Bitterroot College are also closed.

All residence halls have been locked for the day but area desks are open and staffed by students. Students in residence halls, University Village and Lewis & Clark can call the duty phones if they have an emergency. Any questions students have about their class work should be sent to the course instructor.

Employees with questions about reporting to work should contact their supervisor.

If you need help, call 9-1-1 or University Police at 243-4000.

February 26, 2014

Current status of previous alerts:

  • Kevin Briggs was arrested Friday, Feb. 21. in Portland, Ore., and charged with attempted sexual intercourse without consent, aggravated assault, assault on a peace officer and escape.
  • The suspect in the Feb. 6 robberies is still at large. Please contact law enforcement with any information.

February 6, 2014

Update: Suspect still at large. Please contact law enforcement with any information.

1:13 p.m. Campus lockdown has ended. The suspect is still at large, but there is no evidence that he is in the immediate area. Please stay alert and read the following description of the suspect.

Description: White male, 5'5" to 5'7" with slim to medium build, young sounding voice (possible late teens/early twenties), brown hair, dark thick eyebrows, black sunglasses with black frames, light colored (possible white described as checkered) bandana, dark hoodie, black gloves, holding in right hand a black full-sized semi-automatic pistol, blue jeans, dark-colored shoes (white socks), holding white plastic bag in his left hand.

Please stay alert and call 9-1-1 to report any suspect sightings.

Classes and activities have resumed.

12:49 p.m. Campus lockdown has ended. Suspect still at large but no evidence in the area. Stay alert. Classes and activities will resume immediately.

12:22 p.m. Lockdown still in place. If you are in need of medical assistance or other emergency, call University Police at 243-4000.

11:51 a.m. Campus is still in lockdown, active search in progress. Updates forthcoming as conditions develop.

10:45 a.m. Stay in place. Do not move around. Stay in buildings behind locked door. Do not come to campus.

10:43 a.m. Classes canceled. Stay in place behind a locked door until further all clear message.

10:20 a.m. Shelter in place. Lock your doors and stay inside. Stay put and stay in your current classrooms and offices.

9:58 a.m. Two armed robberies north of the footbridge. Stay clear of the area.

February 5, 2014

Update: Briggs was arrested Friday, Feb. 21, in Portland, Ore.

3:45 p.m. Bozeman police have reported that Kevin Briggs, a suspect in a weekend assault and rape case and who escaped, might be in Missoula. UM and Missoula law enforcement ask you to be on the lookout for him. Description: age 28, 5 feet 5 inches tall, medium build, 150 pounds, brown hair, blue eyes. Bozeman police say Briggs also has gone by these names: Amiee Macintire, James Zenon Meismer.

Briggs was reported to have been on probation. He was reported to have been convicted for kidnapping and raping a girl in Helena in early 2003, and convicted of escape in Lewis and Clark County in 2003 and in Powell County in 2004.

Call University Police at 243-4000 or 9-1-1 if you have information about him.

Briggs description