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Public Safety responds to increase in bike theft

By Ehlayna NapolitanoNEWS EDITOR

Bicycles on campus are disappearing in increasing numbers this semester, according to officials at Hofstra Public Safety.

Hofstra’s campus has seen a rise in bike theft this semester, according to Karen O’Callaghan, the director of Hofstra Public Safety. More than previous semesters, bikes have been disappearing from various places on campus.

“We have noticed an increase and we are addressing [it] as best we can,” O’Callaghan said.

Although O’Callaghan identified the area outside of Axinn Library as a problem area, she said that most places on campus have been subject to the increase as well. The bike thefts have not necessarily been confined to one particular area.

Bike usage on campus has increased this semester, according to O’Callaghan. She cited this as a possible reason that the uptick in theft has occurred.

However, many of the thefts, O’Callaghan said, have been the result of students’ improper locking techniques when securing their bikes on campus. Since the beginning of this year, there have been eight reported thefts and attempted thefts of bikes and scooters on campus, according to the briefs issued by Public Safety each week. This reportedly has been an increase over previous semesters.

“A lot of bikes are either not secured or not locked properly,” O’Callaghan said.

However, this is not always the case.

Christie Sinacori, a sophomore physical education and health major, had her bike stolen this Thursday. She said that her bike was parked for about two weeks outside the physical education building near the swim center. The bike was locked to the bike rack.

Sinacori passed by the bike on her way to softball practice on Thursday, she noticed the bike and the chain used to secure it were missing.

“I don’t understand why someone would do something like that,” Sinacori said.

She said that after she discovered it was missing, she went to Public Safety and filed a report. The officials there told her they would investigate the theft and call if they found anything. So far, Sinacori has not heard from them.

Public Safety did research and put together a local safety bulletin to send out to students on Tuesday, according to O’Callaghan. The bulletin was set to include information about properly securing bikes to racks in order to prevent theft.

O’Callaghan also noted that Public Safety officers have been sent to areas that have seen theft problems to increase patrols in an effort to help curb the theft issues.

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