4 UHart students arrested on drug charges, suspects still on the loose after armed robbery attempt

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HARTFORD-- Police are searching for four people they believe area responsible for an attempted armed robbery Thursday evening at the University of Hartford,

The school reported around 5:40 p.m. Thursday that everyone should stay indoors or seek shelter and lock doors because of an attempted armed robbery of a room in the B Complex-Stevens Hall, according to police, which is a dormitory. He showed a black gun.

The lockdown was lifted an hour later, but the suspects--who University of Hartford President Walter Harrison said are not students--have not been caught.

No one was injured during the incident, which Hartford Police say was not random, and was in fact targeted and related to marijuana.

"Based on the circumstances and our experiences here on campus and former law enforcement, robberies are generally tied to drugs," said John Schmaltz, director of public safety for UHart.

However, since the incident four students have been arrested related to drug activities. President Harrison said that both Thursday night's incident and the one two weeks ago were loosely related to drug dealing and buying.

One student--the victim's roommate and likely target of the robbers--was arrested Thursday night, a second around midnight, and the other two on Friday. All were arrested on drug possession, and the two on Friday were charged with intent to sell marijuana. All were freshmen and sophomores.

"The student who was actually robbed, we believe his roommate may have been involved in the drug dealing aspect of it, we think he may be a true victim of circumstances," said Schmaltz. "The first arrest last night was the robbery victims roommate who was arrested by the Hartford Police."

The Hartford Police are investigating the four men seen in the surveillance photos who are believed to be responsible for the attack.

The main suspect who committed the robbery is described as a black man wearing a black hoodie, black pants, a ski mask and green sneakers with red shoelaces. The university says he is believed to have left the area in a 2010-2012 gold Chevy Malibu, pictured above, and was driving south on Bloomfield Avenue.

"We're going to increase the presence of our public safety officers and Hartford Police officers on campus and we’re gonna do more frequent checks of people who are coming onto campus," University President Walter Harrison said in a press conference Friday.

Less than two weeks ago two students were arrested and charged after a violent dorm incident at the school. The incident was in the same dorm -- B Complex -- when an old feud led to two people breaking in a dorm and holding a student at gunpoint. This robbery also had to do with drugs.

While two people were arrested in that incident, the two people who actually broke in the room were not arrested and are on the loose.

Police are saying there's a likelihood the two incidents are connected.

"We anticipate arrests coming from the spring fling incident and we anticipate arrests coming from this incident and potentially arrests going further," Schmaltz said.

The four arrested students, whose identities have not yet been released by police, are banned from campus until further notice.

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