Uptick of bike thefts on campus as summer ends

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By Sean Robinson, Editor-in-Chief

 

This past summer, the University of Nebraska at Omaha’s Campus Security has seen a rise of bike thefts, especially near the residence halls on Pacific St. campus. 

To combat the rise of missing bikes, Campus Security has increased patrols near bike racks and  encourages students to lock their bikes with a shackle lock. The shackle lock is often referred to as a “U Lock” because it consists of a u-shaped metal bar that fits into another straight bar that provides the best security of all bike locks.

“We don’t encourage students to just use a chain and key lock because those can be severed very quickly,” said Paul Kosel, manager of campus security.

Cameras are placed on the bike racks, although pictures of suspected thieves haven’t been clear enough for the department to make out an identity. 

Kosel said he encourages students with bikes to keep an eye on them when locked on campus. He also said some students may only ride their bikes several times a year, taking off months at a time before riding again, and then they don’t realize when their bike went missing. If students are able to give Campus Security a more concrete time when their bike went missing, then it becomes easier for the department to find a bike or a suspect. 

With only minor incidents occurring beyond the rise in bikes thefts, it has been a quiet summer for the department in comparison. Last summer, campus security began the fall semester by increasing patrol after a student reported being sexually assaulted in Scott Village. Just last spring, the department ended the semester by investigating a potential bomb threat to campus, which turned out to be empty. 

Despite past incidents, Kosel said students at UNO should feel safe as Campus Security has four to five officers and one supervisor working on campus at all times, assisting students and faculty with everything from personal escorts and securing the campus to personal threats and motor vehicle assistance. 

“I think students should know that we are approachable,” Kosel said. “Our officers are friendly and will talk to people on campus as well as help them.”

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