LTVN: Protecting your off-campus home

Jessica Babb | Broadcast Managing Editor

Many college students don’t think about housing safety and how they can protect their off-campus home from burglaries.

Waco senior Mills Chenot thought it would never happen to her, until she experienced a burglary last summer.

“It honestly traumatized me,” Chenot said. “When I opened the back door it looked like a light shut off really quick. I was just like, ‘ah, its probably nothing.’ And then I opened the closet door and there was a guy who had broken into my house and was standing in the closet.”

“When the police were checking our house almost all of our windows were unlocked, so it was partially our fault because we made it so easy for him to be able to get in,” Chenot continued. “I definitely am a lot more cautious about it now.”

Chenot isn’t the only one around campus who has experienced a burglary. From January to April of this year, there have been 24 reported home burglaries in the area surrounding campus where many Baylor students live, according to Waco Police Department and the Baylor Police Department records.

In a simulation set up by LTVN, Woodway Public Safety Director Yost Zakhary, demonstrated how easy it was to break into a home.

Beginning with unlocked windows, he was able to gain access into the house in a matter of seconds, only using a small knife. Next, Zakhary simulated a break in with the front door. He demonstrated how an individual could easily put their knife in between the door frame and door to push back the latch and open it.

However, Zakhary noted that by using a deadbolt it was almost impossible to break into the home without messing with the actual door frame.

“No matter how hard I try, I can’t get this with my knife,” Zakhary said.

Zakhary offered simple advice to every college student living off campus.

“Do not make it easy for anyone to gain entrance into your house. Secure your house, secure your doors, secure your windows,” he said.