Dorms hit by burglars

By Michael McFall, Staff Writer

A string of burglaries have been reported in the dorms and their surrounding areas.

Last week, burglars pulled off seven successful thefts. Three thefts occurred Thursday, two dorms were burglarized Wednesday, a backpack was stolen from the Heritage Center on Tuesday and furniture was reported missing last week. Thursday, a bike was stolen from the Heritage Center and a purse and hubcaps were stolen from nearby Red Butte Garden.

Burglars seem to primarily have a need for technology. When the stolen backpack was later recovered in the parking lot of Benchmark Plaza 822, a handheld translator and USB flash drive were missing. When a dorm in Chapel Glen Building 804 and an apartment in Benchmark Plaza 821 were ransacked Wednesday between noon and 3 p.m., a laptop and an Xbox 360 were taken.

“I’m surprised they didn’t take more,” said Sarah Davidson, a junior art history major whose room was hit by the burglars. She returned to her second-floor dorm in Chapel Glen at 3 p.m. to find the door propped open with one of her shoes. She said she didn’t remember leaving it that way when she had left seven hours ago.

Her MacBook was missing, but the burglars had left its power cord behind. They had also unplugged the power cord from her Xbox 360, but hadn’t taken the gaming console or the wallet lying right beside it.

The four residents of the Benchmark Plaza apartment weren’t as lucky. A Xbox 360 was stolen, as well as, a week and a half before that, electronic cables and eight DVDs. They did not report the previous thefts of their cables or DVDs until Wednesday, according to the police report.

Davidson said she is offering a $50 reward and won’t press charges for information leading to the recovery of her white, 13-inch MacBook. It has a Skull Candy brand sticker over the Apple logo, she said.

She told everyone on her floor about the burglary, and while most of her neighbors reacted with shock and empathy, she said there were two young men who did not. The roommates were comparatively indifferent and curt with her, she said.

“I thought that was kind of sketchy,” Davidson said.

The only happy ending to any of the seven thefts so far involves missing furniture. Almost $2,300 worth of furniture was returned to the lounge in Sage Point Building 812 after posters went up around the building that threatened to make every resident pay for replacements.

It’s likely that last week’s burglars are current or previous student housing residents, said Captain Lynn Mitchell of the U Police Department. It could also be someone who is familiar with the Residence Halls but doesn’t live there anymore, he said.

It’s much more difficult this year for burglars to break into students’ rooms, which makes these burglaries more suspect. Over the summer, all of the dorm buildings were outfitted with doors that automatically lock when closed.

No matter how good locks are, they only keep the honest people honest, Mitchell said.

Police have no suspects or witnesses for the burglaries.

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