In last week’s May 3 edition of The Torch, the safety blotter mentioned the recent theft of a cell phone. Since then, two more similar thefts have been reported, prompting Public Safety Chief Jace Smith to send out an email warning Lane Community College employees.

According to the email the two new incidents happened within three hours of each other, one in the women’s locker room in Building 5 and the other in Building 1. In all three of these situations, the items were left unattended for only a few minutes.

Despite this recent trend, rates for more serious offenses, such as burglaries defined by the U.S. Department of Education’s Campus Safety and Security website as “the unlawful entry of a structure to commit a felony or theft”, on college campuses seem to be declining. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, the total number of colleges across the U.S. reported burglaries on campus across nationwide colleges declined from over 30,000 in 2006 to less than 20,000 by 2013.

Compared to other two year public colleges with a similar enrollment size, Lane came in second for burglaries in 2015 with only three total reported according to the U.S. Department of Education’s Campus Safety and Security website. Mt. Hood Community College beats that number with five total reported. When it comes to robbery, defined as “the taking or attempting to take anything of value from the care, custody, or control of a person or persons by force or threat of force or violence and/or by putting the victim in fear,” Clackamas Community College was the only school who had any, with only one reported.

With the recent incidents in mind, Public Safety encourages crime victims to report incidents that happen on campus and for students and employees to not leave valuables unattended or visible in vehicles. To report an incident you can call Public Safety at 541-463-5558 for non-emergencies and at 541-463-5555 for emergencies.