Abigail Forsyth, who was planning on moving out this morning, woke up and realized she had missed a call from campus safety officer Justin Hohenshelt.
Three of her tires on her Honda Accord had been stolen.
It was only two minutes into his morning shift when Hohenshelt heard a loud bang from a lower parking area. He saw a hooded male and a female messing with the car, but only seconds later the pair sped away.
Three of Forsyth’s tires were already loaded up in the vehicle before Hohenshelt arrived. While one tire remained on the car, it wasn’t without effort: a broken piece of a jack was found on the ground.
Forsyth isn’t the only student whose property has been violated. Director of Campus Safety Mike Roth said there have been 20 break-ins and a car stolen this semester alone.
“That’s over $16,000 in loss,” he said.
As far as the number of break-ins go, “Since 2012, when I started, this has definitely been the worst semester by far,” Roth said.
This sort of crisis is relatively new to Corban. For years, Corban had minimum car break-ins. Students got used to keeping doors unlocked, but now students are living with extreme caution.
Allison Herrin, whose car was broken into the night of Spring Formal, feels a general sense of caution that didn’t exist for the last two years, due to the increase of break-ins.
“Last year, I remember hearing about one break-in,” she said. “Other than that, I hadn’t heard of anything like this. People used to leave their cell phones out and weren’t really concerned, assuming it would be there when they got back. And they were.”
Now, she never leaves her valuables out.
“Nothing. Ever,” she said. “I keep my keys on me at all times. My roommate and I have started locking our dorm room. I even choose not to leave my car if somebody appears to be lingering.”
Roth hopes the university will soon prioritize and fund better lighting and cameras in parking lots to deter mischief and crime.
“I’m hoping these many incidents this semester shine light on the necessity of approval for updated equipment,” he said.