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The Daily Wildcat

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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    Off campus living brings added risk

    Many students start living on campus at the beginning of their college experience, but after that first year, most cannot wait to escape the supervision of resident assistants and “”quiet hours.”” But when students make that move off campus, many said that they did so regardless of the inherent added vulnerability to outside crime.

    In 2008 there were 7,100 home-related robbery, larceny or burglary cases in the square area surrounding the UA between Grant Road and Broadway Boulevard and Campbell and Stone Avenues, according to Tucson Police Department’s online crime statistics.

    “”I definitely felt safer living in the dorms on campus, there were more people around, but I enjoy the freedom of living off campus,”” said Alyson Reetz, a psychology senior.

    Reetz and her roommate, who live in the Sam Hughes neighborhood east of Campbell Avenue, had several valuables stolen in October during a one-hour time frame in which Reetz’s roommate had left to go to the gym that night.

    Reetz said jewelry, an Xbox 360, two televisions, a laptop and an iPod were all stolen from their residence.

    Assistant Dean of Students Jason Casares said that as more and more people lose their jobs there will be an increase in crime, both on and off campus.

    “”One of the unfortunate consequences of the economic situation is that crimes of opportunity will often increase,”” Casares said via e-mail. “”If people leave items visible in their cars, leave room or apartment doors or windows unlocked or leave their wallet, computer or backpack unattended in a public area, they are an easy target for these types of crimes.””

    Reetz said when they reported the incident, it took TPD two hours to respond.

    “”They are tracking down people getting MIP’s, but their not tracking down people who are getting their houses broken into?”” Reetz said.

    In 2008 there were roughly 19.5 reported cases of theft against homes per day, according to crime statistics. Burglary with a forcible entry accounted for 10.5 of those cases.

    Reetz said a detective called her a week after the incident and said they identified the two men who had robbed their house, but they were unable to track down the criminals.

    Steven Otero, a political science junior, said he regrets living in the neighborhood that he does, but he would rather switch areas then resort to living on campus.

    Otero, who lives in a house with two other people north of Speedway Boulevard near Stone Avenue and Adams Street said his home was burglarized in October.

    He said the incident occurred on a night when none of the roommates slept at home. When they returned in the morning, their door had been kicked open.

    A television, Playstation 3, two laptops and some other small items were missing from their house, Otero said.

    TPD responded over an hour later and told the residents they would get back to them with more information, but Otero said they have yet to hear from them and have not gotten back any of the estimated $4,000 worth of stuff that was stolen.

    “”We’re definitely more cautious now, always making sure someone is home at night,”” Otero said.

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