East Lansing, Mich—Recently, East Lansing and Lansing residents have fallen victim to a string of burglaries that appear to be related in the month of November. This is occurring despite the fact that burglaries for the state of Michigan are at an all-time low.
Longtime Lansing resident Daniel Turney is one of the victims of burglary over the past month. Turney lives in a house just off Lincoln Ave. in downtown Lansing.
“Luckily I was away from my home when the intruders came into my home through an unlocked window,” said Turney. “Of the 10 years that I have lived here, I’ve never experienced anything like this.”
Turney was working a late shift at his nighttime job when the incident occurred around the hours of 2-4am early Sunday morning. When he came back he realized his front door was unlocked and that his TV and computer were stolen.
“I remembered coming home and walking in my front door and instantly knowing something happened when my front door was unlocked,” said Turney. “Then when I walked into my lounging room the television that I once had was not there and clearly ripped off the stand, my computer was also not where I last placed it.”
The unfortunate victim had lost around $3,000 in valued possessions, where he did not have any home invasion insurance to cover the losses.
Detective Jeremy Hamilton with the East Lansing Police Department has seen several breaking and entering cases over the past month noting that it is not uncommon especially in a college town where students who may be under the influence tend to break into houses.
In 2012 the total number of burglaries in Lansing was 1,307 and for East Lansing, it was 215. However, in 2016 East Lansing totals were 36 burglaries this year and 250 total burglaries for Lansing which is significantly down since 2012. This is reassuring for city officials because the burglary rate has dramatically decreased.
Over the past decade, the burglaries that occurred have been at an all-time low and in the bar graph below, Michigan ranks as one of the top 25 states in crime which is a dramatic change from 1960 where the state ranked among one of the most dangerous states in the US.
“It’s very unfortunate that these incidents happen, but as a member of the law enforcement, it’s my job to make sure that these offenses are very limited,” said Detective Hamilton.
Hamilton has been working on a case where a string of robberies has been occurring late Saturday night, early Sunday morning for the past two months now.
Hamilton is among 220 other law enforcement officers in Lansing/East Lansing with 1.9 police officers per every 1,000-civilians living in the city. The chance of being a victim of crime in East Lansing/Lansing is 1 and 25 with a 1 and 24 chance of that crime being a property crime such as burglary records Area Vibes.
“Normally when robberies occur it’s not a one-time thing,” Hamilton said. “The suspect may hit three or four houses in one night and if this person is successful, the confidence will rise and you will begin to see a pattern and increase in robberies.”
Hamilton also explained that the young college community is especially susceptible to robberies because of the young life that exists.
“We do our best to track strings of robberies and look at the habits of the burglar to see if we can draw any connections to each incident,” said Hamilton. “It’s important that everyone has the ID number of their possessions like a laptop or television so if the item comes up on the black market, we’ll be able to locate it and return it to the proper owner, and we generally do a good job at returning stolen items if we have that number.”
Bailee Hall, a Lansing resident, and victim of recent burglaries was hit on the 700 block of Larch road in downtown Lansing.
“I called the police immediately and they showed up within 20 minutes,” Hall said. “They stuck around to fingerprint the place and take note of everything that was stolen, and this really made me happy to see them actually put time and effort into the investigation.”
Hall was the first house to get hit in the November string of robberies that has raised concern to East Lansing/Lansing residents where the Sunday morning string of robberies has been occurring.
“The Lansing State Journal had reported a couple of these incidents occurring and I never really thought much about it,” Hall said. “Now I learned my lesson for sure and have even warned my neighbors about what happened and to protect their possessions.”
Hall has stayed in contact with the Lansing police department and has yet to get a lead on where any of her possessions went after the robbery.
Crime is a major factor in influencing where someone decides to live and work, so many political officials make it their objective to make sure that major cities and population centers are secure and safe for residents.