Editor’s Note: Austin police have since said the UT student lied to them, and charges were dropped against White. The “victim” now faces making a false report and perjury charges. Updates on that story can be found here
AUSTIN (KXAN) — Kidnapped from his own apartment complex and driven around to several ATMs while thieves drained his bank account. That’s what happened to a University of Texas student in East Riverside, which is a popular neighborhood that many UT students call home.
Austin Police sent out a plea for help this week, in hopes that the public can identify one of the men responsible.
“I was pretty nervous, pretty scared,” the student told KXAN. We’re not releasing his name for safety reasons.
The student said riding a city bus from UT to Crossing Place off of Riverside is a daily routine for many undergrads who live off campus.
About three weeks ago, when he was walking home from the bus stop, he said he was approached by two people.
They were in a car, he said. They slowed down and asked for directions.
The student said when he got closer to try to help, the suspects told him they had a gun, so come with them.
“I know in these kinds of situations, it’s like try to take in as many details as you can, but actually experiencing the situation, the one thing I could think of was ‘don’t make them angry, don’t give them a reason to use the gun that they have,'” he said.
The student recalled being driven around to multiple ATMs. When they reached the withdrawal limit, he said the suspects took him to a bank to empty out his account.
“No thought in my mind said I need to escape right now. It was I need to continue with this, follow through with this, just survive,” the student described.
He said he never actually saw a weapon, but the suspects kept saying they had a gun.
According to Austin Police, all of this happened in the middle of the day, just before 2 o’clock in the afternoon.
“It’s definitely made me think twice about going outside and going about every day life at this point,” the student said. “I try not to leave the house alone anymore.”