8/1 UPDATE: Norfolk Police say they've arrested two teens -- ages 14 and 15 -- and charged them with robbery.
NSU issued the following statement:
Dr. Carol Pretlow is one of many of our beloved faculty at Norfolk State University who is respected by students, her colleagues and many of our alumni.
We were saddened to learn about the reported events that took place at the light rail station in the 1600 block of Brambleton Avenue the afternoon of July 24, 2014. We are grateful that Dr. Pretlow, or any other citizen near the station, was not injured.
We would like to thank the Hampton Roads Transit and the Norfolk Police Department for their handling of the investigation and swift response that resulted in the arrest of two suspects. Now it is time for the legal process to take its course.
More importantly, we look forward to having Dr. Pretlow back on campus when classes resume later this month. She is an outstanding educator who is dedicated to helping her students become productive citizens and critical thinkers.
--Norfolk State University
NORFOLK-- Norfolk police are looking for the suspects who robbed at Norfolk State University professor at a Tide Station Thursday.
Dr. Carol Pretlow, a tenured political professor at NSU, tells 13News Now she was approached by two teens at the Brambleton Avenue Tide station late Thursday afternoon.
"I was sitting there kind of making notes, and this young man came up to me and asked if he could use my cell phone," explained Pretlow. "And I said 'Sorry I don't have it.' He says 'so what can you do for me?'"
Pretlow offered the teens her purse but then asked if she could grab her ID, ATM card and Passport. The teens, Pretlow says, allowed her to take her belongings before one of them grew impatient.
"He said 'But you're too slow,' and he said to somebody, 'We might have to smoke her.' And at that point, I said 'Oh my God, he's going to kill me over a purse?'" said Pretlow.
The teens took off with her purse, before tossing her flip phone she had forgotten was inside, said Pretlow. "I think he was disappointed because it wasn't a smartphone," Pretlow joked.
The train came and Pretlow reported the incident to an officer on-board. Pretlow says she'll continue to ride the Tide everyday, but says she'd feel safer with a more visible security presence.
"I think we need to have more security around there because there's all kind of people around there, there's elderly people like me, there are professional people, there are students and children. And I think it would do a lot to feel more secure," Pretlow said.
Hampton Roads Transportation is investigating and reviewing surveillance video of the incident, according to HRT spokesman Tom Holden. Tide trains and stations are routinely patrolled by both Norfolk police officers and security guards, Holden told 13News Now.
Pretlow says a woman contacted her after finding the purse thrown away in a dumpster near NSU.
Police say the suspects were unarmed.