By: Brian Best, Crime Prevention and Education Officer, Campus Security and Public Safety
As the days get shorter coming into the winter months, Campus Security & Public Security wants to remind you that this is a time for thieves to take advantage of the cover of darkness. This gives a criminal more opportunity to move around unseen, and maybe “case” or keep an eye out for things of value.
Now is the time to be a little more vigilant and aware of personal safety, and the safety of belongings. If you have to be out in the dark, walk with friends. Keep your phone in your pocket; one, to keep it out of sight and reduce the risk of it getting taken from you and two, so that your eyes are on your surroundings and not focused on one thing. If you have to be out by yourself in the dark, and feel uncomfortable, Campus Security and Public Safety (CSPS) will escort you to a safe location. Students can also keep an eye out for the next Self Defense Seminar hosted by CSPS.
Personal belongings should be kept locked up or out of sight. For example, use your trunk to store items, and keep anything of value out of sight inside your vehicle. If you live off campus, keep exterior doors locked, along with your bedroom door, if you have that option. Keep windows secured and when no one is home, pull the shades closed so no one can see the items of value inside your house. The temperatures are dropping quickly in Spokane. Remind students, as tempting as it is to start their cars to warm them up, this provides the perfect opportunity for someone to speed away in their car.
As the holiday season approaches, there are some extra steps you can take to minimize the risk of becoming a crime victim:
Have your mail stopped during the time you will be away.
Have all package deliveries go to your GU MSC box, so they are not sitting on your porch while you are away.
Double check that your doors and windows are locked and that all items that have value are not easily seen from the exterior of the house. Most criminals won’t risk getting caught trying to burglarize a house unless they can see something inside that they want. And the same goes for vehicles. If you would like CSPS to make more frequent checks of your off-campus residence, call us at 509-313-2222 and let us know that you will be gone and when you will be back.
Also, remember that if you are the victim of a crime, call CSPS for an officer to come take a report and guide you through the next steps at 509-313-2222.