With increase in crime, stay alert

Almost a month into fall semester at the University of Minnesota, as homework increases, so has crime, the Minnesota Daily reported Tuesday. Though this brief increase is notably lower than fall 2013, last week there were at least three burglaries, two robberies and seven cases of theft around campus. With this, we urge students to remain alert — especially during late-night or early-morning walks near campus.

Last year, as many likely remember, there were at least 14 crime alerts by December. Heinous crimes were reported, including sexual assault, attempted kidnapping and armed robbery.

Attempted crime was so bad that University staff and law enforcement officials voiced their concerns to the state Legislature in attempts to address the problem.

Crime has steadily decreased since last fall, and that downward trend began as long ago as last spring. The crime rates remained low over the summer into this semester, and the increased prevalence of campus police, better lighting, security and electronic locks on buildings have likely contributed to greater safety.

Though the recent crimes that have been reported are not nearly as vicious as in previous years, we agree with the University’s crime prevention program. It urges students to remain vigilant in order to stay safe. This means sticking to well-lit areas late at night, sticking with friends and keeping your valuables out of sight.

Though safety is the responsibility of both the police and citizens, it’s important to remember that some common-sense precautions are important when living in a large city. Hopefully, with continued efforts to keep crime low and student cooperation, we can keep this a safe place to live, work and study.