Car break-ins on the rise across WKU campus


The front office of the WKU Police Department.

Michael Crimmins, Administration reporter

Officers of the Western Kentucky University Police Department are responding to more and more instances of car break-ins, Melissa Bailey, public information officer of WKUPD, said.

According to the WKUPD crime logs, there are 7 incidents filed so far this month that reported theft or criminal mischief involving a vehicle compared to the nine reports filed for the month of March. Though there is likely more as one report cites “Multiple reports of vehicles being damaged and items stolen from vehicles.”

A majority of the incidents were reported to occur in Parking Structure 1, PS2 and in Creason Lot at the bottom of the Hill.

Bailey said unlike usual car break-ins where there is minimal or no damage done to the vehicle, these incidents involve physical force.

“What we usually see on campus is checking door handles to see if cars are left unlocked, but, unfortunately, that’s not the case, they’ve actually been smashing in windows and cutting soft tops on convertible vehicles.”

Bailey also said the break-ins have not resulted in anything valuable, like a purse or wallet or even change in cupholders, being taken. Although, one student reported having a $20 pocket knife stolen from his Jeep and another reported $30 being stolen.

They cannot release any names they have connected to the ongoing investigations, but Bailey said they have heightened patrols and are currently investigating.

“It’s unfortunate,” Bailey said. “We’ve had several car break-ins, those are ongoing investigations. We’re combing through our CCTV camera footage to try to develop some suspects and hopefully we’ll have success with that.”

Bailey encouraged students to be mindful of their vehicles and their locations as the department keeps investigating camera footage and increasing patrols.

“Continue to lock your car doors, try to park in well-lit areas,” Bailey said. “Check on your vehicle frequently, go to your vehicle frequently, if you haven’t checked on it in the past three or four weeks you definitely need to go check on your vehicle and make sure everything is okay.”

News reporter Michael Crimmins can be reached at [email protected].