18 cars burglarized

By Michael McFall, Staff Writer

Burglars broke the windows of at least 18 cars on campus this week in a search for bankable goods.

On Monday morning, five cars in campus parking lots were burglarized, including the lots at the Kennecott Building and Rice-Eccles Stadium. Two days later, eight cars parked near the Residence Halls and five cars parked by the West Village apartments were the targets of what Police Chief Scott Folsom called a weeklong “fishing expedition,” or a random search by burglars to see what they can find.

“The most addictive substance on earth…is quick money,” said Capt. Lynn Mitchell of the U Police Department.

The same “fishermen” are likely responsible for all of the broken windows and burglaries, Folsom said, because the windows were similarly pried open until they shattered. However, their net only came back a third full. Of the 18 vandalized cars, only six of the owners reported missing property. On Monday, two burglarized cars had missing laptops and another was missing four CDs. On Wednesday, the thieves made off with a purse and a stereo.

But the great white whale of a burglar’s catch was the whole car itself. On Monday, a student reported the theft of a white four-door 1994 Honda Accord from the West Village parking lot. Honda Accords are often stolen so their parts can be scooped out and used by illegal street racers, Mitchell said.

It’s common that a large spike in vehicle thefts crops up every once in a while, especially after a few weeks of dormancy, he said. More reports could surface over the next few days since there is likely a handful of students who have not been to their cars since the burglaries, Mitchell said.

The police have no plans to increase security or patrol the parking lots during the graveyard shift, he said.

“Which lot are we supposed to hit?” Mitchell said. He said there are too many parking lots on campus for police to stake out.

In an e-mail sent to all students living on campus, the chief of police asked students to report anything suspicious to police.

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Tyler Cobb