The Office of Public Safety and Emergency Management is currently investigating three burglaries that occurred at the Ithaca College Circle Apartments during the night of Nov. 9 and the morning of Nov. 10.
One burglary occurred at Circle Apartment 12 between 11 p.m. Nov. 9 and 6 a.m. Nov. 10. Two additional burglaries were reported at Circle Apartment 10 and Circle Apartment 180 between 11:30 p.m. Nov. 9 and 9:30 a.m. Nov. 10, according to emails sent out to the college community.
The Circles residents reported that someone entered their apartments while they were sleeping and stole televisions, gaming equipment and laptop computers. There were no signs of forced entry. Tom Dunn, associate director and deputy chief in the Office of Public Safety and Emergency Management, said he could not reveal any further specifics about the possible motives of the suspect(s) or how they entered the buildings.
The victims of the burglaries cannot be compensated by the college because the college is not responsible for the crimes, Dunn said.
Dunn said the burglaries occurred within close proximity to one another, within a similar time frame and similar possessions were stolen, pointing to a possible connection. However, Dunn said he cannot confirm if this is the case because the investigation is still open and a suspect has not yet been confirmed.
“There is a pattern to the behavior and a pattern to one, the location, and two, the types of items stolen,” Dunn said. “There are consistencies. We at this point, not knowing who’s responsible, can’t rule the possibility out if it was the same person or different persons. Both are possible.”
One victim from Circle 12 said most of their roommates went to bed around midnight, earlier than normal for the apartment, on Friday night into Saturday. They said one roommate thought they had heard something that night but had disregarded it as noise from outside because the windows are typically left open in the roommate’s room.
They said a big TV and a WiiU remote that had been visible through the windows in the main room of their apartment had been stolen.
“I couldn’t believe it at first,” they said.
They said the perpetrator might have entered through the back door, which had given them trouble in the past. The anonymous source said the roommates sent in a request to have maintenance fix the door after the burglary.
“The back door has always been a bit janky,” they said. “It was hard to tell when it was locked or not.”
They said they suspect more than one person burglarized the house because the television was a large object for one person to carry out.
Since the incident, the victim said their roommates have made sure to lock all their doors and be diligent in preventing future burglaries.
“I’d say leave the blinds down if you’re not really looking out the doors or anything,” they said.
A victim from one of the other burglarized apartments said those living in their apartment had been getting in late each night and forgot to lock the door the night that the apartment was burglarized.
They said they believe the suspects aimed to burglarize the houses during that weekend because it was Cortaca weekend and most IC students were distracted.
“That would be a prime time to steal something,” they said. “You wouldn’t be paying as much attention to that. You would be paying attention to other things.”
They said they are less worried about bringing the suspect to justice and more worried about preventing future crimes of this nature.
“We’re moving forward,” they said.
A post circulated in the Facebook group Overheard at IC on Nov. 10, after the burglaries occurred, showing a student climbing on to the balcony of a Circle Apartment building. The post was captioned “Don’t lock the balcony door, they say. NOBODY could get in from there… .” Dunn said the Office of Public Safety has looked into this video and the person captured in the video was not the one who committed the crimes.
The Office of Public Safety is still searching for suspects in the burglaries, Dunn said.
“We’re looking for any assistance the public could provide to identify the person or persons responsible,” Dunn said. “If anybody saw anything, anybody suspicious or saw a suspicious vehicle or saw anybody doing something that night, we definitely want them to call.”
The Office of Public Safety’s anonymous tip line is (607) 274-1060.