U Police Arrest Man for Alleged Stalking, Trespassing on Campus


Frank Gardner

University of Utah campus. (Photo by Paige Gardner | The Daily Utah Chronicle)

By Andrew Christiansen, Online Managing Editor


On the morning of June 9, the University of Utah Police Department arrested 40-year-old Anietie Umoren, a registered sex offender, for allegedly stalking and trespassing. The arrest came after two women reported him aggressively following and harassing them at the Marriott Library.

A safety warning was sent out in an email the same day to inform students of the incident and to provide more details. The incident occurred at 8:58 a.m. Thursday morning and the safety warning was sent out late that afternoon. 

“Responding to these concerns, University Police also learned that Umoren had outstanding warrants for his arrest,” the email said. “University Police transported him to the Salt Lake County Jail, where he remains in custody.” 

Anietie Umoren (Photo via @theU)

The safety alert said the warrants for Umoren’s arrest are for refusal to comply with Utah’s sex offender law by using different names and not disclosing his age. The victims had multiple interactions with Umoren on campus starting May 31 including at the Union building and campus store.

The Incident Explained

According to Lt. Ryan Speers with campus police, the first two interactions one victim had with Umoren took place in the library and in the general vicinity of the library. The victim said Umoren made her feel uncomfortable because he was asking her questions — nothing threatening or obscene — and didn’t leave her alone. 

On Tuesday, June 7, one victim saw Umoren interacting with another female student at the library in a similar way, which prompted her to call the University Police and make a report.

“While we didn’t necessarily have an ongoing threat, you [can] put the totality of it where he kept coming back to the same location and kept making contact with her,” Speers said.

Since the safety warning was sent out yesterday, Speers said they’ve had other victims come forward and say they’ve had at least a single contact with the man that was similar to other reports. 

Once the police were notified on Tuesday, they started searching for Umoren by looking at surveillance footage of adjacent buildings but were unable to find him. On Thursday morning, the initial victim saw Umoren entering the library and called the police immediately. 

Umoren left the library, but two officers who were on bike patrol quickly made their way over and made contact with him near the block U, where they arrested him. He was later taken to the Salt Lake County jail and as of June 10, Speers said Umeron was still being held at the jail.

“It’s always good to get individuals like this off the campus who have no business being here,” Speers said. “Sometimes it’s not easy to do, but in this case, we had really great support from our victims [with] good reports and great information, which made it a lot easier for us.”

The university has issued a no-trespass directive to Umeron, barring him from returning to the campus, but is still in the process of giving Umoren an administrative ban from campus, which requires longer diplomatic procedure. Speers was unable to comment on how far along in this process the university is in.

“When we have an egregious incident, especially with this individual and some of his known history, it checks a lot of the boxes. … We don’t want this individual back on our campus because he’s never been a student, he’s not staff and he really has no business being here,” Speers said.

Campus Safety at the U

Lucas Butterfield, president of Students for Action Focused Empowerment, said the safety warning sent out to students made it sound like Umoren was first reported to the police on May 31, which was misleading.

“That sort of makes it sound like a week went by and nothing happened, so that’s good to know that the response was faster,” he said.

Butterfield referenced the April 2022 state audit that found several examples of incidents at the U that were not reported to campus police in a timely manner and negatively impacted campus safety. The audit stated they believe the root cause of the reporting issues is the university’s “complicated and, at times, contradictory policies and procedures for crime reporting.”

“I think students would also be interested in hearing ways the university is planning on revising its system so this doesn’t happen or they can respond quickly just to see some accountability from the university,” Butterfield said.

Speers said how this specific situation was handled showcases great collaboration and communication, providing a good example of how their processes are supposed to work.

“It’s still a work in progress, [but we’ve] tried to improve that communication,” he said. “We’re only one office, one branch of the university, but we need to work in tandem with the Dean of students’ office, our housing office, the Office of Equal Opportunity, [and] the Office of General Counsel.”

The U’s 2021 Annual Security Report lists 14 different possible reporting options for the campus community including campus police, the Dean of students, the Office of Equal Opportunity and human resources. 

“If [a victim] goes to one of these resources, I think they are under the assumption that ‘I talked to someone and that’s probably going to be communicated to the police’ and as the audit revealed, maybe that hasn’t always happened and that’s an area we’ve focused on to improve so that those kind of things aren’t slipping through the cracks,” Speers said.

Speers noted it’s important to share information between different resources as a network, so they can prevent re-victimizing someone because they have to share their experiences multiple times.

“Our goal is if anything comes across any number of these resources or locations, other than those that do have a strict confidentiality restriction such as the counseling center, that information gets shared amongst us resource stakeholders as a network,” he said.

What helps the university police the most, Speers said, is sharing any information about incidents or suspicious people on campus with them as soon as possible.

“I would encourage people with any suspicious encounters, even if they don’t think it’s criminal, [to] call,” he said. “Then we’ll go from there if the situation mitigates or escalates [and] we can take appropriate action.”

Any member of the community who sees Umoren on campus should call University Police at 801-585-2677. 


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