Avoiding auto theft at UWT

By Kristin Dellavecchio

On November 7, 2013, a UWT student reported to campus security that his 1999 Honda Civic had been stolen. It was parked at the 400 Block of 17th Street and was said to have been stolen sometime between the hours of 7:30 a.m. and 3:45 p.m. The car had no alarm system.

On November 4, 2013, a UWT student reported her 1998 Honda Civic stolen. The car was parked at the 2100 Block of Hood Street, which is fairly close to campus. The car was stolen sometime between 7:45 a.m. to 3:35 p.m. This car also did not have an alarm.

Susan Beth Wagshul-Golden, Director of UWT Campus Safety and Security, shared some statistics on auto theft. In the state of Washington, a car is stolen every 13 minutes. 2013 has the highest rate of auto thefts than any other year. The chance of a car getting stolen is one in 179. Many times after a car is stolen, it is used for crimes. Susan stated, “One out of five stolen cars are started with a key that was left in the car. What can you do? Don’t make it easy to steal.” Here are some tips for UWT students to ensure their car is safe:

  •  Never hide a second key on/in the car
  •  Lock your car
  •  Park in a well-lit area
  •  Don’t leave valuables where they can be seen
  •  Use anti-theft devices – this can be a locking bar, kill switch, etc.
  •  Never leave the ignition running while not in the presence of the vehicle
  •  When leaving the car make sure all windows are up

In the case of an emergency, UWT Campus Safety & Security can be contacted at (253) 692-4888. Campus Safety & Security is located on the first floor of the Dougan building in Suite 180. Office hours of Campus Safety & Security are Monday through Friday 9:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.; however, campus security officers are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.