Thursday, April 17, 2008

Crime Prevention Tip of the Week #2 - Lock your Door

Several incidents occurred this year in which students were victims of crimes which may have been prevented by a simple step - locking their residence room door. Many students reported they were gone only long enough to take a shower, visit a friend down the hall, or use the restroom.

In this academic year, we have had numerous thefts from residence hall rooms, one sexual assault perpetrated by a male who is believed to have entered an unlocked room, and an unknown male walked in on a student while she was sleeping. In one case last fall, a homeless man was arrested after he entered several rooms and areas in Porter Hall attempting to find unattended cash.

Despite attempts by the college to provide locks on the outside doors of residence halls, put card access on exterior doors, and provide locks for ground floor windows, crimes still occur in residence halls. Some crimes have committed by fellow students or by visitors of fellow students; a few were committed by currently unknown persons.

Regardless of the perpetrator, a locked door can go a long way toward protecting you and your valuables. Laptop computers and iPods are easy targets for thieves as they are easy to carry and can be easily sold. These items have not only academic but personal importance to their owners, and are expensive to replace. Most certainly, no one wants to be the victim of an assault or worse.

Additionally, members of the community should be very careful not to prop open exterior doors or leave ground floor windows unlocked. If a door is found propped open, un-prop it; if a window can not be locked, contact Public Safety. If you see someone suspicious in or near a residence hall, contact Public Safety at x2304, or dial 1-911. (From a cell phone call us at (413) 538-2304.)

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