APD helping college students prevent burglaries

Thousands of college students are moving into apartment complexes across Austin as they get ready to start a new school year. Many of them coming to college for the first time, while they'll likely face some unexpected challenges in the classroom, they could also face them at their new home.

"In year's past, we tend to see a spike in vehicle burglaries and also there are other issues with students who are new to college not being familiar with how to be safe in a larger city," Officer David Easley, of the Austin Police Department, said.

Virginia Gonzales is helping her daughter, Stephanie, move into her new apartment for the upcoming school year.

"I do worry about her coming in, sometimes she'll have late classes and especially fall semester it's just a little scary to know she's coming when it's dark and I just want to know she is safe and protected," she said.

Officer Easley and other APD officers are working to help students stop a preventable crime from happening to them.

"A lot of these students typically come from small towns, rural areas, and they are use to leaving their cars unlocked, their door unlocked, and they are not just use to being in a city that as a lot of people in it and a lot of bad guys looking to take their stuff." Easley said, "As we talk to people we'll see a lot of surprised looks on people's faces and we generally get a good response."

Students like Shawn Washington know they could use a tip or two.

"I'm just very lackadaisical with my car so when it comes to my car I would run inside and I would leave the door unlocked or leave my phone or my purse out in the open." Washington said, "Once he came by and gave me a pamphlet, he was very friendly, and said I should be more cautious about your car, people have been breaking in, it made me more aware and less lackadaisical with my items."