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Cycle crime spike blamed on student negligence

Cycle crime on campus is up by 200%, according to the police. This sudden rise is part of an overall increase in targeted theft of student property, on campus and in student housing areas around York.

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Cycle crime on campus is up by 200 per cent, according to the police. This sudden rise is part of an overall increase in targeted theft of student property, on campus and in student housing areas around York.

In 2009, 327 bicycles on campus were reported as stolen. Figures since then have fallen, but this year crime rates have escalated, partly due to weak crime prevention by students. Overall crime rates have risen by approximately 50%.

Jon-Mark Buchanan, Police Community Support Officer for the campus area said: "When one person is slacking in crime prevention, it becomes an invite for everyone else. Criminals will circle campus looking for a target... They are going to know that students will have mobile phones, laptops, bicycles - it's a guarantee."

Recently two burglaries in Wentworth were reported. The ground floor windows of these two student rooms were smashed, and cash, a laptop and other expensive items that had been left on show were stolen.

Outside of campus, densely populated student areas including Hull Road, Tang Hall and Fishergate have also become targets for theft and burglary.

One student whose house was burgled told Nouse, "My iPod was taken and they cleared my wallet. They also went through my housemate's wallet, taking several weeks wages which unfortunately happened to be there. It's incredibly unnerving that this person was going through my possessions while I was asleep in my bed."

Buchanan advised to call 999 if you are witnessing "anything that's classed as a crime that requires an immediate response." This can be if someone suspicious is within your property's grounds. 101 should be used for non-emergencies or to report a burglary. "We rely so much on the public for calling us."

George Offer, YUSU Welfare Officer, said: "We've been looking at how we can make students feel safer. The first thing we're doing is running a campaign to ensure students know to pick up the phone, tell the police and access support if they fall victim to crime.

"Later this term, we'll be working with the council, the police and institutions across York to get information out to students in the city about how to stay safe and protect themselves from crime."

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