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Clutch your purses SAIT, private property theft increasing

Keep that shiny new laptop in your sight, every year thousands of dollars worth of possessions are stolen on SAIT campus, and the problem might be getting worse.

Data provided by SAIT campus security shows that from July 2015 to June 2018 there were 399 reported thefts on campus. 81 per cent were of private property, while 16 per cent were related to SAIT property. Additionally, nine vehicles were reported stolen from campus during this time.

Over the past three fiscal years, the number of reported thefts on campus has risen each year. Between 2015-2016 and 2016-2017 there was a 23.3 per cent increase in thefts, while between 2016-2017 and 2017-2018 there was a 25.5 per cent increase in thefts on campus.

While the data seems to indicate that theft is becoming more frequent, there remains the possibility that SAIT students are just more likely to report their stolen possessions than in the past.

Data for fall 2018 term have not yet been compiled, so whether this trend has continued  remains to be determined.

SAIT theft stats in graph form

SAIT campus private property thefts are up this year according to Paladin Security.

The increase of theft on campus was driven by a steady rise in the reported theft of private property on campus. Vehicle theft, however, has declined from a spike of seven vehicles in the ’15-16 fiscal year.

Students are often the victims of private property theft on campus, targeting items such as “bicycles, laptops, cellphones, backpacks,” said Bakani Ncube, SAIT Safety and Community Services Analyst.

It’s up to students to avoid being the victims of theft, said Ncube. 

“There’s always theft on campus, we can’t control it.

“It’s important people take responsibly for these belongings.”

There are trends in what gets targeted and stolen, said Trevor Tailfeathers, security operations coordinator at SAIT.

“The common thread this semester is bicycles and computers,” he said.

Having a prized possession stolen only takes a moment of inattention, said Chris Gerritsen, communications team lead at SAIT.

“It only takes about ten seconds for a thief to walk to an unsecured area and take something.”

Students should be vigilant and report any activity they find suspicious to help reduce theft on campus, explained Gerritsen.

“We should look out for one another and protect our valuables.”

“It’s important to keep in mind that if you see something, you say something.”

Second-year business student Sarah Yusef became a victim of theft on campus last year during a late-night study session at Heritage Hall.

“I went to the bathroom and left my [laptop] charger, but took my other belongings [her laptop, phone, and headphones],” said Yusef.

“When I came back my laptop charger was missing, and I was only gone for about two minutes.”

If you been affected by theft on campus, call Campus Security’s non-emergency line, (403) 284-8530.

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