Students want more safety measures on UNCC after car break-ins

During the last six months, 17 incidents were reported. In 2021, more than 40 break-ins were called in.

UNIVERSITY, NC — There are increasing calls for safety measures after dozens of cars were recently broken into at UNC Charlotte campus parking lots. Some students want the university to take more action.

“My passenger’s window had been smashed in. There was glass all over the front seat and all over the floor,” said Nicolas Tomasi.

The freshman was home for Easter weekend when he got a call from campus police that his car had been broken into.

“It was just such a huge hassle. I had to drive with a paper bag on my window and had to get it repaired out of pocket,” he said.

Cameron Lewis spent $240 to fix the damage to his car after it was ransacked in December 2021.

“They rummaged through my car, the middle area, but they didn’t take anything,” said Lewis.

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Tomasi and Lewis, are not alone; 17 incidents involving more than 80 cars have been reported on campus during the last six months. In 2021 alone, the university confirmed that 47 car break-ins were reported.

Here’s the breakdown of car break-ins UNC Charlotte provided to us spanning the last six months, starting in November 2021:

  • November 2021 – six incidents involving nine vehicles
  • December 2021 – one incident involving 29 vehicles
  • January 2022 – one incident with one vehicle
  • February 2022 – two incidents with two vehicles
  • March 2022 – one incident involving one vehicle
  • April 2022 – six incidents involving 40 vehicles

After spending $500 a year for parking, Tomasi wants the university to do more.

“I feel like this could have been prevented multiple occurrences before the university had put in proper security measures,” he said, “so, holding the school accountable and helping these students out to pay for these damages.”

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“It just feels like there’s a breakdown on safety since these crimes are happening so close to the dorms,” said Lewis. “I just feel like the university could do more to prevent crimes like these because we don’t know what these crimes could spiral into if they are not kept in check.”

UNC Charlotte said it is stepping up patrols in its parking lots and hoping that the addition of more police cars and a police tower will have would-be thieves think twice before breaking into another car. The university is also working with the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department on investigating other car break-ins in the University City area.

UNC Charlotte is also encouraging students to park in well-lit areas, lock their doors, and not leave any valuables inside unless they’re well-hidden in a trunk or hatch.

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