While only one in five American homes has a monitored security system, the odds are much worse for protecting America’s college students. Kids away from home, often for the first time, can accumulate plenty of expensive electronics and other possessions, favorite targets of burglars – and few security companies have risen to this challenge. The vulnerability of student housing is clearly proven by this recent report from Columbus, OH – the home of Ohio State.
A man accused of using a master key to break into campus-area homes and apartments faces 40 felony charges for his alleged crimes. Kip Koehl Klages is accused of burglarizing numerous homes and apartments near the Ohio State campus and one residence near Capital University.
Female Students Targeted
This part of the report is enough to make any co-ed’s parent think about security for their child.
College-age women in the campus areas appeared to have been targeted for these burglaries between July 2010 and February 2011, Franklin County Prosecutor Ron O’Brien said. During previous NBC4 reports, it was said in some cases, he watched and possibly photographed victims while they slept. Columbus police officers arrested Klages Friday, Feb. 11, at an OSU campus-area apartment building. There was a master key on his key ring at the time of his arrest.
We would ALL like to know where that master key came from. And you can bet there have been some changes to security locks since then!
Crime REALLY Does Not Pay
Klages is suspected in more than 20 break-ins, which all allegedly were accomplished using a master key. He will be arraigned on the new charges at 1:30 p.m. Friday, April 8, in Franklin County municipal court. If convicted on all charges, Klages faces more than 100 years in prison, O’Brien said.
That’s a stiff potential penalty – the longest I have seen for any serial burglar. And with the lack of available of campus security in the US, it’s not surprising that it was much harder to catch these thieves – or deter them.
Problems – and Solutions
Here’s some helpful information on how you can protect your students when they head back to school in the fall:
- Problem: most alarm systems require a phone line – and students have all gone wireless. An alarm system that requires a phone line just won’t cut it for today’s undergrads and post-grads.
- Solution: the best systems use cellular monitoring, so no phone required. And remember, not every company offers that – or they charge a lot extra for cell.
- Problem: alarm systems are traditionally hard-wired and require installation – and this means school or landlord permission, mess, and leaving the system behind each year.
- Solution: a completely wireless system that moves with you, and that can be expanded if you need additional protection. The best ones come fully programmed and take about a half hours to set up with no tools.
FrontPoint protects students in dorms and campus housing all over the US and Canada. In one South Carolina student community, over 100 homes have a FrontPoint wireless system, so we are providing peace of mind to over 400 students – and their parents. And with Interactive monitoring, it’s easy for the students to stay connected, and avoid false alarms – one more important benefit. No wonder FrontPoint is the #1 ranked alarm company in the US. We don’t just serve homeowners, like most residential alarm companies: renters, students, and others need and deserve protection, too.