Burglaries rise during holidays

In just a few minutes, and for a few dollars, students can help prevent a burglary.

According to Muncie Police Detective Tony Sisson, taking simple precautions can keep a house or car from being broken into.

Sisson said burglaries increase over holidays and breaks.

"We'll see a lot of houses broken into," Sisson said. "Often we see a lot of car burglaries as well."

However car buglaries can easily be prevented, Sisson said.

The faces of CD players should be removed if possible when leaving the car. The face can be taken inside or put in the trunk or glove compartment. Sisson also suggested hiding other possessions, including purses and CDs.

"If you can't take them in with you, hide them," Sisson said. "Most of the time, burglars break into cars because of what they can see."

Director of Public Safety Joseph Wehner said there are a few more burglaries over breaks, and most do not get reported for a few weeks because students are gone.

Sisson said common knowledge and a little preparation can also prevent such incidents at homes.

"Have a strong lock on your doors," he said. "Your back door (also) should be secure."

Those who are concerned about the effectiveness of their door locks should purchase a sliding bolt lock, Sisson said. The lock attaches to the door and goes into the floor. According to Sisson, these are available for less than $10 at home supply stores.

Students are encouraged to make sure their windows are locked. He suggests screwing the windows shut when students leave for break and removing the screws upon return.

"It's not a difficult thing to do," Sisson said. "If you don't think you have the tools or are capable, find someone who is."

For those who are renting or are not full-time residents, Sisson advises students to take their valuables home with them.

"Take your CDs or your jewelry and bring it with you," Sisson said. "Go around the house and find things of value. Taking out just an extra 10 minutes makes a difference."

If students have done all they can to keep valuables with them, they can also take measures to help in the recovery of items that could be stolen.

Sisson said that students should write down serial numbers of televisions, stereos and computers. He also suggests that students label most of their possessions with their initials, including CDs.

This is important when students have parties at their houses, according to Wehner.

"It's happened in the past that a guest comes to a party with someone else and just help themselves to the person's belongings," Wehner said.

Wehner said for those who have parties, they should know who they invited and who those people are bringing.

"We come across all kinds of stolen property," Sisson said. "If we filled out a report and then found it later with initials on it, it will more likely be returned to you."


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