AlertSU warns of automobile burglaries on campus

Jan. 19, 2024, 1:13 a.m.

The Stanford University Department of Public Safety (SUDPS) sent an alert  Thursday afternoon to report a range of automobile burglaries and parts thefts occurring over a range of locations. 

The burglaries occurred at Wilbur Parking Lot, Governor’s Corner Parking Lot, 955 Mears Court and 500 Block Lane W from Oct. 23 to Jan. 12. The burglaries and thefts mostly occurred during the evening and overnight hours, between 3 p.m. to 9 a.m., according to the AlertSU. 

The perpetrators stole mainly from Toyota automobiles as well as Prius, Yarius and Corolla models, the notification stated. Catalytic converters, hybrid batteries, bumpers and wheels were reported to have been stolen.   

SUDPS spokesperson Bill Larson told The Daily that no suspects have been identified at this time. He wrote “it is unknown if the incidents are connected.” 

To prevent future crimes, the SUDPS will have increased patrols, Larson wrote.

“We also share information with our campus security partners who also provide security services on our campus,” Larson wrote.

These crimes reflect a larger trend in increased reported crimes on campus, including increased vehicle theft and burglaries. The Bay Area and many other parts of California have seen a rise in vehicle thefts, with many burglars targeting valuable catalytic converters, resulting in shortages and months-long backorders for victims waiting for replacements.

California lawmakers hope to deter these thefts with a new assembly bill taking effect this year that would impose stricter punishment for the theft or illegal, unlicensed dismantling of automobiles. 

SUDPS recommends community members keep their car doors and windows locked, with valuables out of view. They also encouraged students to report suspicious activity and behavior such as loitering around vehicles, trying door handles or peering into vehicles.

This story was updated with comments from SUDPS.

Learn more about the Clery Act and how The Daily approaches reporting on crime and safety here.

Hana Dao is a vol. 264 Science Technology News desk editor. In addition to writing for the Daily, she enjoys discussing fashion and having picnics on campus.

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