Returning from a Sunday morning jog past Le's home, Lv said Yale students had been more confused than scared by the disappearance.
In fact, it had mesmerized many undergraduates on the Yale campus, a vibrant Ivy League world generally oblivious to the city that surrounds it -- until something like this happens.
For The Record
Los Angeles Times Tuesday, September 15, 2009 Home Edition Main News Part A Page 4 National Desk 1 inches; 43 words Type of Material: Correction
Body found at Yale: An article in Monday's Section A about the discovery of a body in a Yale University research lab -- now known to be that of graduate student Annie Le -- misidentified Le family friend Joette Ward as Joelle Ward.
Thomas Kaplan, editor of the Yale Daily News, said that undergraduates, who had only returned to classes within the last two weeks, were fascinated by the possibilities of a major crime on the grounds of the medical school.
"Until this happened, I hadn't even been over there," said Kaplan, a senior from suburban New Haven.
But he also said Sunday: "If this turns out to be some sort of horrible random act, it will be troublesome to everyone regardless of where you live."
Over the last decade, crime in general has been less of a preoccupation among Yale students than it had been, Kaplan said.
In 1998, an undergraduate was killed in East Rock. The crime remains unsolved.
After that, the university stepped up security, installing dozens of blue phones with panic buttons around campus and instituting a shuttle bus system that allows students to call for a ride at any hour.
In an e-mail to the Yale community Saturday, university official Linda Koch Lorimer tried to dispel doubts circulating about the general safety of the area -- where, she noted, crime had decreased by 50% since 1990.
Le apparently was concerned about crime, and took the time this winter to caution Yale students about the risks of academic life in an urban setting -- and the higher instances of robbery in New Haven compared with other Ivy League settings.
In February, she wrote an article for a medical school magazine, quoting Yale Police Chief James Perrotti with advice for students on how to stay safe.
"In short," Le wrote, "New Haven is a city and all cities have their perils but with a little street smarts one can avoid becoming yet another statistic."
Times staff writer My-Thuan Tran contributed to this report.