Southeast Missouri State University student publication

Burglary on the rise around Southeast

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

An increase in burglaries are happening at and around the Southeast campus.

There have been 16 cases of burglary reported from the last week of Nov. 2017 to the beginning of Feb. 2018. Compare this to the whole year of 2016 where there was only 7 reported cases. This information comes from the daily crime log located inside the Department of Public Safety at Southeast.

A burglary in Dearmont was reported on Jan 7, 2018 where property valued around $300.00 was taken. Another took place in the student recreation center on Nov. 30, 2017 and 10 burglaries took place on Nov. 29, 2017 in the Towers West and North.

Even though the burglaries mentioned at Towers were on the same day, it is unknown if there was a common theme to the items taken.

Ryan Kassing, a junior at Southeast, heard about the multiple break-ins at Towers.

“I live in the fraternity housing at Sigma Chi and we used to leave our doors unlocked but since the break-ins, we have to keep them locked now,” Kassing said.

Kassing said that he normally keeps the door to his room locked anyways for safety reasons. All of the campus cases still remain active except for one, which is unfounded.

The burglaries were not limited to the campus. Emma Barden, a senior at Southeast, had her house broken into during winter break. Marie was living with four other girls at a house on North Ellis, within walking distance to campus.

Barden explained that someone pried open their back gate to gain access and broke a window on the bottom floor bedroom trying to get in. After the burglar was unsuccessful, they went around to a bathroom window, pried it open and got inside the house.

“The really got some of us good,” Marie said about the break-in.

Four televisions, backpacks, jewelry, speakers, headphone and more were taken from the residence according to Barden and her roomates. Barden said that this was the first time that this has ever happened.

Barden mentioned their landlord set up cameras around the house after the incident. One of her roommates set up a camera in her bedroom for extra security. Although this incident was close to campus, it fell outside of campus grounds and was taken to the Cape Girardeau Police Department.

Lt. Creighton Gould, from DPS, briefly explained how incidents are processed. He said when they get the call, the respond as soon as they can and speak with the victim and witnesses. Information is then entered into their database that can be used for follow ups if the case stays active.

Speaking on the surge of burglaries in the area, Gould said there seems to be a spike in crimes right before semester break.

“Students get worried about finals or going home and just get too comfy and forget to lock their door,” Gould said when referring to why the increase of break-ins happens.

To safeguard themselves, Gould recommends that students:

· Make a list of valuables and write down the model and serial number

· Take pictures of property

· Make an identifying mark or engrave

· Don’t leave cash or credit cards visible in car

· Lock your room when you leave it even if you’re just stepping out of the room quickly

· Make sure your car is locked when not in use

· Don’t carry or flash, large amounts of cash

For more information on daily crimes around Southeast, click here. A paper version is available 24 hours a day the lobby of Southeast Missouri State University’s Department of Public Safety, 1401 N. Sprigg St., Cape Girardeau, Mo. 63701.