Thieves target college students during moving time

TOLEDO, OH (Toledo News Now) – The University of Toledo police have reported that during move-in week last fall, theft offenses were up by about 50 percent compared with an average week among people living on-campus.

Burglaries are affecting off-campus students as well, as all students prepare to leave for the summer. University of Toledo students are taking finals and preparing to move home, making them an easy target for thieves.

Senior Justin Shaffer, who rents a home on Evansdale Avenue, had his home burglarized Saturday night. The thief took electronics, a lap top with hundreds of pictures, his military challenge coins and a jar containing his dog's ashes.

"Other stuff, electronics I can get back but the sentimental stuff I can't get back. It's irreplaceable. All of them have memories and hold memories, precious memories," Shaffer said.

Instead of focusing on finals, Shaffer is spending his time visiting area pawn shops, searching for the items that have been stolen from him. He believes the thief slipped in through a window after his roommate moved out:

"My thought is they seen what he had he had nice stuff so maybe his roommates had nice stuff."

University police see a rise in thefts when students are moving, or away on break. The University's police chief is warning students to be careful, close and lock doors and windows while moving, and to not leave valuables unattended.

"If you make that extra little effort to secure your items and be safe you're likely not to become a victim," University of Toledo Police Chief Jeff Newton said.

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