Ohio State recommends safety habits in response to Wednesday’s Scott House burglary
Following the arrest of a suspect on Friday afternoon after a burglary at Scott House two days earlier, the university has shared its ideas on how to prevent similar incidents from happening.
University spokesman Dave Isaacs could not provide The Lantern with the frequency of residence break-ins, but noted it was a concern. Isaacs said staying aware of who is trying to enter residence halls and their surroundings are two of the best ways for students to prevent future incidents.
“You can only enter your residence by swiping your BuckID. We put this security in place very specifically to keep unauthorized people out,” Isaacs said. are nice in opening the door to someone, but we are also opening the door to a potentially serious security issue.”
The university issued a security advisory on Friday after a suspect followed students through Scott House and went to the women’s restroom. The suspect, who is not affiliated with Ohio State, was arrested the same day as the notice.
The biggest issue leading to residence burglaries is tailgating — holding the door open for someone who has unauthorized access to a building — which has always been a problem for residence security, a Isaacs said.
“The best we can do is to continually remind students: Don’t let anyone into your residence hall who doesn’t have access to it,” Isaacs said. “We are constantly reminding students not to allow tailgating. We cover it in meeting rooms, we have signage, we have digital signage in buildings that have digital signs. It is constantly reiterated by all of our staff.
Isaacs said the new residences are designed to spot unwanted guests.
“We’ve designed, especially in the more recently built residence halls over the last 20 or so years, halls of residence so that there’s a view from reception of people coming in,” Isaacs said.
University police chief Kimberly Spears-McNatt said students should watch each other and take action if they spot someone stalking, which she says is a problem constant.
“If you see anyone you think shouldn’t be there, don’t approach them, but please do contact the police division and let us come and investigate and determine if that person is in fact a student, staff member, or faculty, and do they actually belong in that residence,” Spears-McNatt said.
Spears-McNatt could not provide a number of dorm burglaries per semester, but said whenever an unauthorized person is inside a dorm causing trouble, university police will take immediate action. .
“Keep making sure that if they see something, say something, don’t hesitate to report it. We want them to feel safe on campus and the importance of looking out for each other,”
Spears-McNatt said. “We want students to feel safe, it’s their home in a hall of residence, and so anything we can do to help that and help each other.”