Off-campus burglaries leave no suspects

Rachel Hagenbaugh

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Thousands of dollars in electronics and other belongings were taken during a series of robberies that occurred near campus between March 29 and 31.

The first burglary occurred at 324 S. Willow Street between 10:30 p.m. March 29 and 7:30 a.m. March 30, according to police reports.

Natalie Moses, sophomore communication studies major, said she left the apartment at about 11:30 p.m. and all the doors were locked.

“I know all the doors were locked because I actually locked myself out,” Moses said.

Jodi Kokoski, junior education health and human services major, said she came home around 2 a.m. the night the burglary happened. Kokoski said she ate and left about 2:30 a.m. because nobody was home and she didn’t want to stay at the house by herself.

She said her roommate’s door was open and the lights were on upstairs, which was unusual.

“[It] seemed a little weird,” Kokoski said. “I had a feeling something was different, but that’s not why I left.”

One of Kokoski’s other roommates came home about 7:30 a.m. and called the police.

“It looked like a tornado hit the upstairs bedrooms,” Kokoski said.

Landlord Larry Neiman said it looked like someone ransacked the bedrooms, threw sheets off the beds, took the drawers out of the dressers and tossed everything on the ground. He said it appeared they took smaller things they could carry, but left bigger electronics. Police report’s initial estimation of the stolen property was $9,260, which included wallets, laptops, designer purses and cameras.

Neiman said he installed a high security lock system with magnetic keys on all the doors in the house, including the bedrooms, when he bought the property in 1989. He said there are two locks on all the doors, one that automatically locks when the doors shut and a dead bolt lock that residents can use if they want extra security.

Moses said it appeared someone entered through the window in the living room. Neiman said there was no sign of forced entry, but the screen to the window was pushed up and a handprint was on the window. He said it looked like whoever broke into the house exited through the side door because it was left open.

Neiman was notified about the robbery Friday morning and replaced the front door the same day. He didn’t have the tools with him to fix the bedroom door that was kicked in at the latch. Four rooms were broken into, but only one of them was locked. Neiman said the girl who occupies that bedroom said she wasn’t going to be home for the rest of the weekend. He went back and fixed the door Sunday and is going to replace the locks on the other bedrooms that were entered.

“This cost everyone a lot of money,” Neiman said, “but it’s the cost I have to bear to keep my tenants happy.”

Neiman said one of the tenants had to have her car towed and taken to the dealership to get the locks replaced. He said whoever broke into the house stole the victim’s entire key ring.

A second robbery occurred March 30 between 8 a.m. and 5:30 p.m. at 118 W. Williams St., according to police reports. An Xbox 360, Kinect, three Xbox games and a controller were stolen.

A third robbery occurred between 3:45 p.m. March 30 and 3 a.m. March 31 at 550 S. Lincoln St. A 42-inch flat screen television was stolen. At least one of the tenants at the Lincoln street address knows the tenants from the South Willow street address. It has not been determined if the burglaries are related.

There are no reported suspects for the burglaries.

“At least thank God no one got hurt, and it was just material things that were stolen,” Neiman said. “The only thing I can do is provide them a safe place to live. It’s unfortunate this happened.”

Contact Rachel Hagenbaugh at [email protected].