COLUMBIA — Burglaries in Columbia during MU's spring break numbered 16 — up by one from 2010.
The biggest difference between the totals is the increase in residential burglaries and the decrease in commercial burglaries, Latisha Stroer, the Columbia Police Department public information officer, said.
Between March 26 and April 4 this year, there were 14 residential, one commercial and one “other” burglary, which Stroer said likely represents an unattached garage or shed.
Last year, between March 27 and April 5, there were 10 residential and five commercial burglaries, she said.
Stroer said the burglaries this year were not concentrated in any one area but were spread equally among the north, central and south of the city. Of the burglaries reported this break, only one person was arrested. Stroer said this person was found in the area and arrested after leaving the house.
Stroer said the Police Department paid officers to work extra hours and had two sergeants assigned to coordinate the burglary prevention effort during spring break. The department also made sure to warn the public that breaks are times when burglaries are more likely to occur.
"We put (a warning) out before winter break and spring break as just a little reminder to help prevent someone breaking into your house as much as possible," Stroer said.
Police urge residents to consider these precautions before leaving for an extended time period:
- Leave exterior or interior lights on or use timers.
- Stop or arrange for pickup of mail, newspapers and packages.
- Ensure all doors and widows are secure.
- Disable automatic garage doors.
- Travel with any expensive items, like laptops, cameras, TVs or jewelry.
- Give the residence the appearance that someone is home.