Correction: A story in the Nov. 2 edition of the Daily (Bursley robbery adds to string of dorm thefts) incorrectly stated that the robbery in Bursley took place at 2:30 a.m. It took place at 3:15 p.m.
After being awoken by two burglars in his Bursley dorm room, a 19-year-old University student chased down one of the intruders to retrieve his laptop computer early Monday morning, the student said.
The incident was the latest in a recent string of dormitory burglaries.
The student said the sound of one of the burglars trying to unplug his laptop woke him up at around 3:15 p.m.
He said he was able to catch a glimpse of the suspects. He described the suspect attempting to steal his laptop as 5’10,” 170 pounds, black, stubble on his face, wearing a brown jacket with dark jeans.
He described the second suspect as 6’1,” 180 lbs, black with possible goatee and wearing a long-sleeve, button-down white shirt and blue jeans.
He said they were only a couple of feet from his bed.
“They were halfway between my bed and the door,” he said. “They didn’t bother me but were just concerned with stealing my computer.”
According to the student, after he got out of bed, one suspect fled, while the other continued unplugging cords from the laptop until it was completely disconnected.
The student said he grabbed the second suspect, who was carrying his laptop and heading out of the door. The suspect freed himself by punching him twice in the face, the student said.
“My adrenaline was going so I didn’t really feel anything. It also didn’t really hurt,” he said.
Undeterred, he said he followed the two suspects down the stairs and through an outside doorway.
Once outside, the two suspects split up, he said. Wearing no shoes, the student followed the suspect holding his laptop to a wooded area.
The chase ended after about two minutes of running when the suspect tripped and fell, the student said. The suspect fled, leaving the laptop behind.
The student said he pursued the suspect because of the value of his laptop.
“I didn’t want to get back at the guy, I simply just wanted my laptop back,” he said. “I do all my homework on it, and it has many important files.”
He said he believes the door was accidentally left open, because there were no signs of forced entry, and the door locks automatically.
DPS spokeswoman Diane Brown said this burglary was not an isolated incident. Prior to this incident, there had been eight burglaries in Baits, South Quad, and the Northwood apartments in October.
Brown said that burglars stole laptops, iPods, credit cards and other personal items from those three residence halls.
In all eight cases the tenants failed to secure their houses either by keeping a door ajar or forgetting to put a bar down to lock a sliding door or window, Brown said.
In many of these cases, students were sleeping when the burglary occurred.
She said all of the cases are still under investigation and there are no suspects at this time.
Brown stressed the importance of students locking their doors and computers.
“Most of these incidents could have been avoided by merely taking a minute to follow commonsense safety procedures,” she said.