Campus police respond to increased thefts last semester

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By: Celeste Simmons | Published March 31, 2016

There were a total of 36 thefts on campus in the span of two months last semester, including a stolen car from the Vaughn Eames parking lot in October and dozens of reports of stolen laptops and bags.

In last month’s police blotter published in The Tower, 13 thefts occurred, resulting in the loss of shoes, clothing and laptops. However, this month there were none.

Kean University Police Lt. Vincent Kearney elaborated on last semester’s increased thefts.

“The majority of thefts on campus are crimes of opportunity,” said Kearney. “Property is left unattended or out of the immediate view and control of the owner. There are also instances where thefts occur from unsecured lockers and/ or dorm rooms.”

Kearney added that most people target cell phones, computers, laptops, purses and backpacks.

Andre Jones Jr., a graduate student who lives on campus in Bartlett Hall, has been a student here since 2004. He recalled when some of his friends had items stolen from their dorm rooms too.

“When I was a freshmen I remember friends having things stolen from their rooms. If there is something bad going on let everyone know,” he said.

So what are the Kean police doing to help prevent these thefts?

“The Kean University Police Department utilizes a system of directed patrols, targeted in part towards areas where previous crimes have occurred,” said Kearney. “Report anyone who appears to be suspicious or doesn’t belong,” said Kearney, “An example of this could be a person wandering the floors of the library for long periods of time without a backpack, books or a laptop. This could be someone trying to get some exercise, or it could be a person casing the area and waiting for students to step away from their property for a moment, creating the opportunity for theft.”

Students and faculty should still be aware of their surrounds and report any suspicious activity to Kean Police Department by calling (908)737-4800.

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