Oak Creek Apartments, an upscale community where studio units demand a starting rent of over $2,600 per month, is home to Stanford students, faculty and families.
Records provided by the Palo Alto Police Department, which has jurisdiction over the complex, detail at least three car break-ins at Oak Creek over the winter break period.
One Oak Creek resident, who requested anonymity, confirmed in an e-mail to The Daily that he had left his car unlocked and about $50 worth of items were stolen overnight.
Karthik Sivaram, a graduate student and resident of Oak Creek during the fall quarter, was not surprised to hear of the car break-ins.
“Bike thefts are way too common there. [At] the rack at which I would park my bike [at Oak Creek], there were multiple robberies on that rack,” he said.
Fellow graduate student and Oak Creek resident Kevin Poulet was a victim of bicycle theft this fall.
“I got my bike stolen — it was in a bike rack at Oak Creek,” Poulet said. “I went to Oak Creek management and told them my bike was stolen. They told me to report it to the police, and they recorded the theft, but they didn’t take any action [after that].”
According to Sivaram, there are measures Oak Creek can take to prevent future incidents of theft.
“I think they can place CCTV cameras — that seems like an obvious and fairly low cost solution. I’m really surprised they haven’t done anything, but I feel like they don’t care about Stanford students,” he said.
Despite the recent increase in criminal activity at Oak Creek, both Sivaram and Poulet said that they generally felt safe at the complex.
“I didn’t feel threatened there,” Sivaram said. “I used to get packages delivered and they’d be placed outside my door, and they’d never get stolen. I felt pretty safe — it was only the bikes, a lot of people had their bikes stolen in the quarter.”
“Yeah, I felt pretty safe, except for all these bike thefts I heard about,” added Poulet.
To deter automobile break-ins, the Palo Alto Police Department advises drivers to lock any valuables in the trunk and avoid leaving cars unattended in parking lots for extended periods of time.
Gerson Bakar & Associates, the management company in charge of Oak Creek Apartments, did not respond to The Daily’s request for comment.
Contact at Michael May at mmay20 ‘at’ stanford.edu.