Crime

Burglaries occur in student apartments during Winter Break

For burglars, Syracuse University is a winter wonderland.

While students were on vacation during Winter Break, burglars were hard at work, hitting 17 student apartments between Dec. 23 and Dec. 29, 12 of which were Campus Hill apartments.

The majority of the stolen items were electronics, Syracuse police Lt. Eric Carr said. Police are still investigating the specific value of losses as criminal reports from returning students are still pending.

The investigation is still ongoing and no suspects have been arrested, Carr said.

“Historically, there has been an increase in break-ins in the SU area during winter breaks, when the perpetrators know students are away and apartments are empty,” Campus Hill’s management wrote in an email to its residents.

Campus Hill’s management also said it was working closely with the Syracuse Police Department as well as the Syracuse University Department of Public Safety on the investigation.

The management team has ramped up its security for its apartment complexes, spending more than $100,000 in recent months on theft prevention.

This includes increased security patrols during winter breaks, newly installed video cameras, additional light inspections and $50,000 in new locks for all Campus Hill properties, management wrote.

“It is very upsetting that criminals seem to target student apartments, but we want you to know we are doing everything we can to address this issue,” the management team said in the email.

DPS wrote in an email that it recommends students secure their doors and windows, keep valuables out of plain sight, make sure entrances have adequate lighting and report any suspicious activities to police.

The university area also suffered a rash of burglaries in late October when Syracuse police reported 17 burglaries in two weeks. Stolen items typically involved televisions and computers. Despite the recent series of thefts, police reported a 24 percent drop in burglaries for 2014, compared to 2013.

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