BY Joe Mccormack
Car burglaries and house break-ins have been an issue over the past couple of months in the Bridgeport and Fairfield area. Among some of the victims are Sacred Heart students.
“My neighbor’s house got broken into half way through the night,” said Senior Alex Kroudis. In October, Kroudis’s neighbors experienced a home break-in on Highridge Drive, in Bridgeport, about five minutes from main campus.
“My neighbors woke up in the middle of the night with people actually in their house, when I heard about it, it was one of the scariest things I ever heard,” said Kroudis.
According to Kroudis, the burglars removed an air-conditioning unit, opened the window and climbed through to enter the house.
“We live in a safe area, there hasn’t been any reported crimes around us but that was an eye opener, and you should be more aware that things like this can happen,” said Kroudis.
The Fairfield patch reported that a group of car burglars were caught thanks to an alert from a resident earlier this month.
“These car break-ins have been a recent problem through the region and the state,” said Public Safety officer and former Fairfield Police Chief, Gary MacNamara.
The car burglaries happened within a five-mile radius of the main campus. “We know that individuals perpetrating this are seizing opportunities of unlocked cars. They will walk quietly through neighborhoods checking cars. If they find an open car they take things and sometimes the car. That is why prevention is the key,” said MacNamara.
According to the Fairfield Police Crime Statistics Monthly Report, throughout the month of October there were seven motor vehicle threats and three burglary incidents. Those numbers have dropped from the previous year. In Oct. 2017 there were five burglary incidents and eighteen motor vehicle incidents. The burglary arrest total dropped by one during the month of October, from 16 in 2017 to 15 in 2018.
“Police encourage people to lock doors, don’t leave any valuables in plain sight and definitely take the keys,” said MacNamara.
Since the beginning of 2018, the Fairfield Police Department has recorded 58 burglaries, 222 larcenies, 37 stolen vehicles, 550 suspicious activities, and 161 thefts from motor vehicles, according to the Fairfield Police Commission Monthly Report.
“It is hard to say whether or not victims in these cases will ever get their items back. Generally, unless the subjects are caught in a timely fashion with the items still on their person, the items will not be recovered,” said MacNamara.
Fairfield Patch reported earlier this year that the areas in Fairfield that are most affected by burglaries and suspicious activity are Middlebrook Drive, Pansy Road, Valley View Road, Wagon Hill Road, Short Hill Lane, Woodland Road and Tahmore Court.
According to Public Safety, the university’s main campus rarely ever experiences vehicle or house break-ins. U.S. News states that 48 percent of the university’s students live in off campus housing, which comes with a higher risk of experiencing home burglaries or car thefts.
“Report suspicious activity. For their part, police will increase patrols in the area and utilize K9s to track subjects,” said MacNamara.