Eastern Michigan University
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Anyone with information should contact:

Ypsilanti Police Department
Det/Sgt T.C. Eberts
Crime Stoppers
800.SPEAKUP (773.2587)

Julia Niswender

Julia Niswender

Watch the complete Campus Safety Forum:

Forum Video

Off-Campus Student Death Investigation

Latest Update:

October 25, 2013
5 p.m.

Reward Increase: President Martin announced in an email that the reward for information in the Julia Niswender case has been increased to $15,000.


February 7, 2013
6:25 p.m.
Message from EMU student Rachel Weyhing: The family of Julia Niswender will be selling "Justice for Julia" T-shirts, bracelets, ribbons and zebra scarfs at the EMU Student Center on Feb. 15 and 16. Money raised will go into a scholarship fund at EMU in Julia's memory.

Friday, Feb. 15, from 10 a.m. - 3 p.m.
Saturday, Feb. 16, from 10 a.m. - 3 p.m.
T-Shirts $10, Bracelets $5
EMU Student Center
Contact: rweyhing@emich.edu 


January 29, 2013
1:34 p.m.
Update from Ypsilanti Police Department: The YPD has issued a media release stating that they have received the Medical Examiner's Final Autopsy Report. "The manner of death is Homicide." A suspect has not been identified.

January 9, 2013
5:05 p.m.
Update from Ypsilanti Police Department: The YPD has just issued a media release stating that the department "continues to investigate and interview a number of subjects" and that they are "still awaiting results of toxicology, forensic laboratory analysis, and a final autopsy report."

December 18, 2012
5:02 p.m.
Benefit Fund: Donations to the Julia Niswender Benefit Fund can be made at any Monroe Bank & Trust branch.

December 17, 2012
4:54 p.m.
Email to students, faculty and staff: Eastern Michigan University's Police Department continues to stay in close contact with Ypsilanti Police as the investigation into the death of student Julia Niswender remains active and ongoing. At this time, Ypsilanti Police have no new information to report about the status of the investigation. As we reported last Thursday, Ypsilanti Police have stated the death is suspicious with indications of foul play, and they are investigating the case as a homicide. They are continuing to follow up on leads and conduct interviews. The Eastern Michigan University Department of Public Safety and Michigan State Police continue to assist Ypsilanti Police in the investigation. Anyone with information concerning the case is asked to contact Det/Sgt T.C. Eberts @ 734.482.9878 or Crime Stoppers @ 1-800-SPEAKUP (773-2587).

We will report any updates we receive from Ypsilanti Police as soon as we receive them, and this includes any updates that occur over the semester break. Please continue to monitor the investigation website for further updates and information, as well as details about counseling services, actions that have been taken to increase safety and security on campus, the SEEUS walking/mobile escort service, and ongoing news media coverage of the case. Since our announcement last week about the expansion of the SEEUS service to 7 a.m., which remains in effect through Wednesday at 11 p.m., more people have been using the service.

Funeral services took place this morning at Redeemer Fellowship Church in Monroe Township, with several hundred family and friends attending.

In light of this tragedy and the tragedy in Connecticut on Friday, it is important that we remind everyone of our emergency text alert system and how you can sign-up to receive timely warnings of any campus emergency. Eastern Michigan University uses a university-wide text-messaging alert service to notify students, faculty and staff if an emergency situation occurs on campus. The alerts provide real-time information as a text message to your cell phone and email containing information on the situation.

Participation is completely voluntary, and you can cancel the service at any time. You can add two additional mobile numbers and email addresses under your subscription. There is no cost for the service and no charge for subscribers to send or receive text messages. Messaging charges may apply depending upon your wireless carrier plan.  Click here to sign up for Emergency Text Alerts.

Parents of EMU students can be registered under their student's account. Each subscriber can enter up to three (3) mobile contact numbers and three (3) email addresses.

The campus alert service will be used only in the event of a campus emergency (and for occasional testing of the system), so you don't need to worry about receiving unsolicited messages. Your name and phone number will not be shared with anyone else through this system.

You are not automatically removed from the service when you graduate or leave EMU. If you separate from Eastern Michigan University and no longer wish to receive the text messages, there are two ways to stop receiving messages:

1. Login to your account at www.getrave.com/login/EasternMichigan and click on the Groups tab and use the Text/Email checkbox options to specify your message delivery preferences, or;

2. Text STOP to 67283 or 226787 from your registered mobile phone. You will no longer receive any messages from EMU Text Alerting.

If your question relates to registration, or the use of the system, please contact the Emergency Management Office at 734.487.0799 or email at: emergency.management@emich.edu

Once again, as soon as we have any additional information about the investigation from Ypsilanti Police, we will share it with you.

December 14, 2012
10:10 a.m.
Julia Niswender visitation/funeral information:
Visitation will be held at Rupp Funeral Home in Monroe on Saturday from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. and Sunday from 12 p.m. to 8 p.m. The funeral service will take place Monday at 11 a.m. at Redeemer Fellowship Church in Monroe Charter Township. Additional information can be found at Rupp Funeral Home.

December 14, 2012
9:45 a.m.
Counseling services remain available through CAPS at 734.487.1118 in 313 Snow Health Center. Over the semester break when CAPS is closed, calls will be answered by voice mail. Callers should leave a message so calls may be returned promptly as needed.

December 13, 2012
5:12 p.m.
Candlelight Vigil: Students and friends of Julia have organized a candlelight vigil for tomorrow (Friday) night at 8:30 p.m. It will take place outside of the Lakehouse. You are asked to bring your own candles. The students will be accepting donations for the Julia Niswender Fund, which has been opened to help the family with expenses. Please view the Facebook events page or contact Rachel Weyhing at rweyhing@emich.edu for additional information.

December 13, 2012
5:10 p.m.
Campus safety actions have been implemented to expand our already strong campus safety and security efforts. Some of these actions result directly from comments and suggestions made at yesterday's safety forum:

  1. Extended the SEEUS walking/mobile escort service to 7 a.m. (previously ended at 3 a.m.);
  2. Added additional SEEUS escort staff;
  3. Designated Halle Library as a station for SEEUS walking and mobile escorts between 3 a.m. and 7 a.m.;
  4. Added four additional campus security personnel in the overnight hours;
  5. Added two additional officers  to patrol from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. in addition to the normal shift coverage.
  6. Adjusted lighting sensors to brighten exterior security lighting in the areas adjacent to Halle Library and the College of Business;
  7. Adjusted the automatic timing patterns of the exterior lighting in the areas adjacent to Halle Library and the College of Business to have them turn on earlier (4:30 p.m. - 30 minutes before sunset) and to stay on later (8:30 a.m. - 30 minutes after sunrise)

A reminder, the SEEUS walking and mobile escort service can be requested by calling 734.487.3387 (734-48-SEEUS).

Complete text of this latest campus safety press release is on our news release site.

December 13, 2012
4 p.m.
The Ypsilanti Police Department has issued a news release on the death investigation of Julia Niswender. Cause of death is listed as "pending." YPD "continues to investigate this case as a homicide until proven otherwise."

December 13, 2012
10:39 a.m.
In an effort to keep the EMU community as informed as possible, the Division of Communications has compiled a list of media coverage on the investigation. We will add relevant stories as they are published.

December 12, 2012
6:34 p.m.
EMU Student Government leadership has released a statement on the death of student Julia Niswender.

December 12, 2012
4:38 p.m.
From the on-campus forum: Lisa Lauterbach, director of counseling services, speaks on the emotions of this "shocking loss." Lauterbach: "We're all feeling a lot of pain." Lauterbach tells the audience that counseling services on campus are free and that EMU counselors "will be happy to talk to you and help you sort things out."

December 12, 2012
4:14 p.m.
From the on-campus forum: President Martin reaffirms "strong commitment" to campus safety and offers condolences to the family, friends and loved ones of Julia Niswender. EMU Chief of Police Robert Heighes states that investigation is a Ypsilanti Police Department case and that EMU is assisting "wherever and whenever possible." Heighes reviewed safety tips and let the campus community know that EMU will have extra officers on patrol.

December 12, 2012
1:19 p.m.
Students, faculty and staff are invited to a campus forum today (Dec. 12) at 4 p.m. in the Student Center Auditorium to discuss campus safety. EMU Chief of Police Robert Heighes will provide an update on the death of Julia Niswender, and President Susan Martin will also speak.

December 12, 2012 
8:26 a.m.
The Ypsilanti Police Department has just informed us that the off-campus death of the female student reported overnight is being investigated as an apparent homicide. The student has been identified as 23-year old Julia Catherine Niswender. The death occurred in an apartment in the 1000 block of Huron River Drive. The cause of death has not been determined. No information on a possible suspect has been determined.

The Three Column is part of the College of Arts & Sciences, 214 Pray-Harrold, 734.487.4344

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