Campus crime creates fear in student safety

The start of a new semester brings a wave a bike thefts and car break-ins.

The start of a new semester brings a wave a bike thefts and car break-ins.

Once the sun goes down, classes are let out of session and Sonoma State University students return to their homes, criminals lurk in the shadows looking for valuables to steal.

“My bike was stolen in the night last week,” said Keira Daneh, a sophomore Hutchins major. “It is an extreme inconvenience to me considering I ride my bike to and from class everyday.”

Sonoma State University Police Services has been going to local bike stores to see if any of the reportedly stolen bikes from campus were sold to the shop for money. Sonoma State police recommendsstudents to use campus bike racks scattered throughout the campus, securing bikes with a u-shaped lock and reporting suspicious behavior. Students can now register their bikes for free online which will give police services a better chance of finding stolen bikes.

    “We have reported seven bikes being stolen [as of this semester] and have identified a suspect that we are bringing to the DA to press charges against this criminal,” said Nate Johnson, Sonoma State Police Chief and Executive Director for Enterprise Risk Management.

Amanda Klein, junior and women and gender studies major, had her car damaged in the middle of the night in a parking lot just one week before the fall semester began.

After she realized what happened, Klein called the police services to report the crime. Her car was then dusted for fingerprints and a written report was filed.

“I don’t know exactly how they got in, however there was over $300 worth of merchandise stolen such as an old phone and wires necessary for my car,” said Klein, “They also ripped my dashboard attempting to hot wire my car.”

Students who’ve been affected by crime on campus have access to many resources at Sonoma State to help cope with traumatic experiences including the Student Health Center and Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS).

In 2013, the university announced they were introducing the Jeanne Clery act, an annual report showing crime on campus.

This report requires the university to provide crime statistics, police services recommendations on safety and crime prevention, as well as how to report crime on campus. The report will be published on Oct. 1.

The campus is also equipped with blue stands that, when used, will alert the on-campus police department and will send an officer to escort you to your car or on-campus dorm.

Whether students are leaving a late night class or feel uncomfortable walking home students can rely on this service to ease their worry.