While many students are printing boarding passes or gassing up
their cars for fall break trips, the Ann Arbor Police Department
has a concern a little closer to home — in fact, no farther
than students’ front doors.

Ann Arbor Police Sgt. Ed Dreslinski said there have been 56
off-campus home invasions since Sept. 6, including 30 invasions
where there is no forced entry, which he said is higher than in
previous years. He reminds students of the importance of locking
doors and windows, especially when they will be gone for long
periods of time, such as over fall break.

“If (students) keep their windows unlocked or if
there’s only one person that stays behind, there’s less
chance of someone coming back and interrupting something. The
potential for increase is definitely there when students leave town
—whether it’s accidental or laziness,” he
added.

The Department of Public Safety also urges students living on
campus to secure their belongings over the break.

“People do need to take safeguards, both when
they’re around and when they’re not. But certainly when
people are gone, there isn’t anybody to look out (for
them),” DPS spokeswoman Diane Brown said.

Dreslinski said taking simple precautions can help protect
students from home invasion because burglars will look for an
“easier target.”

“People don’t want to break doors and windows
because it causes noise and they don’t want to get caught.
They’ll look for an easier target,” he added.

The University’s Campus Safety Handbook provides
suggestions for home safety, including locking your doors while
sleeping and taking valuables home during vacation.

 

-Make a habit of keeping your doors locked. Lock your door when
sleeping, when leaving a roommate asleep inside, and when leaving
your residence.

-Do not leave valuables in open view. Take valuables home during
vacation.

-Visually inspect your residence before you leave, so you can
tell what’s beendisturbed or is missing when you return.

-Coordinate with your roommates so all roommates know when where
everyone is expected to be and when they’re expected to
return.

-Both police departments urge students to report any suspicious
behavior, such as an unknown person checking doors in a hallway or
looking in a neighbor’s windows.

— Written by Daily Staff Reporter Melissa
Benton.

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