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Car thefts down since 2009, same as last year;

Published: Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Updated: Tuesday, April 17, 2012 12:04

         Reports of motor vehicle theft at Georgia State decreased over the last year, which follows a five-year general trend of less car theft.

In the past school year, police recovered three of six reported car thefts, which matches last years’ results. However, these numbers reflect an 80 percent decrease from 2009, the peak in the five-year span at 30 reports.

         Despite the trend, Georgia State police say students should remain alert and careful of where they park their cars.

“While most of these incidents occurred on off -campus locations, there are no specific areas that are particularly problematic,” University Police Officer Nicolay Hammond said.

       Though reports of motor vehicle thefts and attempted thefts have not decreased from last year, Georgia State Police actively patrols parking lots and decks that are operated by the university.

          In the last year, five of the six stolen vehicles were parked on the streets or in off-campus lots and garages.

“So far, in 2012, there were three reports of theft and attempted theft of motor vehicles,” Hammond said.  “All vehicles were recovered.”

Hammond said that, according to state law and local ordinances, it is against the law for anyone to loiter in a parking lot where they do not have a vehicle parked. In order to help prevent such crimes, the University Police have a unit that focuses on property security and personal safety as well as training programs in order to ensure they are informed in trends in crime prevention.

          University Police offer a number of programs designed to educate students about criminal activity and how to respond if they become a victim. These include a safety escort service, crime prevention programs and safety tips.

While there is a unit to assist students and inform them on how to be safe on campus, Hammond offers her own advice. Hammond says students should park in lots where there is an attendant on site or in areas that are in the public’s view and well lit.

       “To prevent vehicle theft, lock all windows and doors. Never leave personal items in plain sight, don’t leave vehicles on and unattended, and consider installing an anti-theft device such as an audible alarm or steering wheel lock.”


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