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Campus crime roundup #3: Exam time and cyber crime

The+Daily+Wildcats+police+beat+brings+students+up+to+speed+on+campus+crime+and+ways+to+stay+safe+at+the+University+of+Arizona.+
Maddie French
The Daily Wildcat’s police beat brings students up to speed on campus crime and ways to stay safe at the University of Arizona.

As the spring semester flies by and with midterms approaching, it is easy to get overwhelmed by the demands of obtaining a degree. In all of this chaos, take solace in the fact that students aren’t a blue Jeep Sahara with five missing tires. 

In this Campus Crime Roundup, the Daily Wildcat will bring the campus community up to speed on recent campus crimes (like the theft of this poor car’s tires) and potential trends. Stay safe, Wildcats!

Napper in McKale Center  

On Jan. 27, a woman unaffiliated with the University of Arizona men and women’s swim team or campus was found sleeping on the couch in the team’s common room, located in McKale Center, at approximately 10 a.m. The report described the woman as appearing to be 40 years old and noted that she was wearing a construction vest. 

It is unknown how the woman entered the common room, as the team reported leaving the doors secure at 5 p.m. the evening before. The suspect left the scene when told to, and no damage was reported other than two Powerade drinks that were missing from the refrigerator. 

A weekend of wheels and windows

Between Jan. 26 and Jan. 27, a UA student’s vehicle was broken into at a parking lot near the Honors Village (Lot 1228 at 1480 N Park Ave.). While nothing was stolen, the window was shattered. 

On Jan. 27, two unknown males reportedly in their 30s stole two bikes from a rack near the Arizona-Sonora dorm. 

On Jan. 28, an unknown suspect stole all five tires off of a blue Jeep Sahara parked on the second level of the Sixth Street Parking Garage. 

Suspect in social media scam actually a victim

On Jan. 26, a female UA student reported purchasing $200 tickets from what she believed to be another female UA student via GroupMe, only to never receive them. The report noted that the seller requested payment through multiple platforms. Prior to the transaction, the buyer had requested the seller to authenticate her identity by sending a photo of her with her CatCard.

When the tickets were not received, the student reported the seller to the University of Arizona Police Department. UAPD traced the CatCard to what was initially presumed to be the suspect, but the photo belonged to a different female UA student who had previously fallen victim to a similar scam in March 2023, also via GroupMe

In that instance, the seller had required the victim to provide a photo and ID before purchasing the tickets, only to use the photo to facilitate the same scam nearly a year later.

Only two days before the GroupMe ticket scam occured, UAPD reportedly assisted a different female victim of a scam over Instagram in which the student’s life was threatened by an anonymous user after she accepted money from an anonymous user on the app. 

According to a study by Penn State University, college students fall into a demographic that has been shown to be more prone to be targeted by social media scams, and the rate at which they are being targeted has been increasing since 2014. 

Additionally, an article by the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project notes there may be evidence to suggest women and disenfranchised individuals are more likely to be victimized by cybercrime.

It is too early to tell whether female UA students are targeted more frequently than males, but the Wildcat will continue to monitor whether this trend continues in UAPD reports in line with national trends. 

Resources on avoiding scams during transactions can be found on the official Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation website.


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