October 24, 2017
UCCS Police are investigating a series of vehicle break-ins and one motor vehicle theft that took place Oct. 2-8. Seven reports of stolen items from parked and unattended vehicles occurred between this time frame, along with one motor vehicle theft in Alpine Garage on Oct. 8.
UCCS Police are investigating the crimes alongside the Colorado Springs Police Department and the Fountain Police Department. According to Marc Pino, chief of police, the departments have information that may lead to an arrest.
“We think they’re all different individuals, but they’re all connected as a group,” Pino said.
These areas are working together so that they can all participate in the charges if someone is arrested, Pino said.
“We’ve been able to use the cameras in Alpine Garage to help us gain suspects, and we’re working with Pikes Peak Community College, who has had some similar issues on their campus matching some of the vehicle descriptions and things we’ve seen.”
Students were notified of the thefts in a timely warning issued by the UCCS Police Department Oct. 9.
“In the majority of the cases the victim’s vehicles were unlocked and personal items were visible to the suspect outside the vehicle,” read the timely warning sent to students’ UCCS emails.
The warning also stated that students should also report any suspicious individuals or activity, remain aware of their surroundings at all times and encouraged students, faculty and staff to lock their vehicles and take valuables with them. Police are also available to escort students to their car during night hours.
“We haven’t seen an increase in the requests for escorts since we sent out those notifications, but there has been an increase in people calling in suspicious individuals or vehicles,” Pino said.
Timely warnings are issued in accordance with the federal Jeanne Clery Act, which governs university notification procedures for crimes that pose a significant risk to the community, even if the risk is not ongoing.
The Clery Act also mandates emergency notifications for situations that pose an active threat to the UCCS community, as in the case of the potentially armed suspect in Lot 220.
Students should contact campus police at 255-3111 to report a crime or suspicious activity, provide information useful in the investigation of the recent car thefts, or to request an escort. The University Police Department is located on the first floor of the Gateway Garage.