At every college, it is inevitable that there will be some misdemeanors. People will break into cars or houses, throw up or urinate in inappropriate places, or vandalize public property. But at Wittenberg, people are asking: Have the vandalisms gone too far? We’ve had houses broken into and students assaulted. Is Witt falling apart?
“This year, our big thing’s been car break-ins, which isn’t really uncommon, but it has been a little more severe than it has been in the past,” Lieutenant Lee McCartney said.
Despite this, McCartney says that, overall, crimes that commonly occur on campus have decreased over the past few years.
“A lot of the cars were unlocked when stuff was taken out of them,” he said. “So we ended up putting out a few emails, to make sure your vehicles are locked and that you don’t leave valuables in your cars, and so those numbers have gone way down.”
As far as house break-ins go, the most dangerous time of year is Wittfest, because people will go to the events and leave their houses unlocked. Security has increased during those events, taking the number of break-ins significantly down, and now the biggest concern is during the holidays. There’s no real pattern to the break-ins and no real telling what is more likely to get stolen.
McCartney advises to either take all items of value home with you, or leave them with someone you trust who is staying on campus. Students who live in off-campus housing also have the option of letting the police department know if the house will be empty for an extended period.
“We’ll do a daily check of the house, and we’ll go around and check all the doors and all the windows just to make sure there’s nothing wrong with the residence,” McCartney said.
What is the most dangerous time of year when it comes to security?
“Normally towards the beginning of the school year and the end of the school year, when it’s warmer outside… those are typically the higher months,” McCartney said. “Thieves don’t like to get cold.”
If you possess a vehicle on campus, remember to always keep it locked and to not leave valuables in your car where they can be easily seen. With winter break coming up, if you’re leaving your house, let the police department know so they’ll make sure your residence is safe. And if a student has a vehicle that they’d like to leave on campus during breaks, the best option is to leave it in the Krieg parking lot, which has the best lighting and is very frequently patrolled. Make sure your valuables are safe so that you can relax and enjoy your winter break!