Town sees little crime despite student absence over holiday

By Collegian News Staff

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The Daily Hampshire Gazette reported that Amherst residents notified Amherst Police of just three break-ins last Thursday and Friday, a fairly low number considering police usually deal with a measurable spike of break-ins when students are out of town.
Police received word of the first break-in Thursday morning at 9:37 a.m., when a landlord at a Pine Street residence said there had been a forced entry into a home rented by a group of college students. The Gazette reported a television stolen from that home.

Another break-in Thursday afternoon at 4:36 p.m. resulted in the arrest of a man who apparently knew the owner of the home he entered. Police said the burglar was attempting to steal marijuana he believed would be inside. The Gazette reported that police received a complaint of a final break-in at 1:44 a.m. on Friday morning from a tenant who reported no forced entry, but found cash and checks missing.

Amherst and other college communities often see spates of property crime around Thanksgiving and winter breaks, when students head home and residences are left vacant and vulnerable.

Officer William Laramee of the Amherst Police Department’s Community Outreach Unit said in a release last week that the town tends to see upticks in break-ins around this time of year.

“Historically, we have had a high number of reported breaking and entering during school breaks (Thanksgiving, Christmas),” he said. “A lot of this is simple carelessness by the homeowner or renter.”

-Collegian News Staff