LAS VEGAS (KLAS) – The University of Nevada, Las Vegas police announced a campaign on Thursday to keep bicycles and scooters safe on campus, as recent statistics show a rise in property crimes on campus in 2022.
“Just staying alert,” UNLV student Evelyn Magana said of campus safety. “I actually just have tasers and pepper spray.”
Magana was one of several students who shared with 8 News Now the steps they take to keep themselves and their belongings protected.
“I don’t feel safe leaving it on the bikes,” UNLV student MB Alam said of his things. “So I keep it out in my pockets.”
University Police announced Thursday’s campaign to prevent student bicycles and scooters from being stolen, by offering free U-Locks to those who register them with PD services.
Students looking to register can click HERE.
Bike U-locks are available for free with proof of registration at UPD Headquarters located on the first level of the University Gateway parking garage. Students can also register their equipment through campus police. Registration can be done online or through UNLV RebelSAFE. This helps police identify lost or stolen property and return it to the rightful owner.
According to the 2023 UNLV Security and Safety Report, robberies, burglaries, and car thefts doubled or even tripled from 2021 to 2022.
The report states that two robberies were reported on UNLV’s main campus in 2021 and five were reported in 2022.
In 2021, 21 burglaries were reported on campus while 53 were recorded in 2022, according to the report.
When it came to car thefts, seven were reported on campus in 2021 and 21 were reported in 2022.
At the same time, person-to-person crimes like rape, fondling, and even domestic violence, saw a significant drop on campus from 2021 to 2022.
According to the same 2023 report, there were three rapes reported on campus in 2021 and just one reported in 2022.
In 2021, two fondling cases were recorded by University Police, while one was reported in 2022.
Domestic violence also saw a shift, as 11 cases were reported on campus in 2021 and nine were recorded in 2022.
For a look at the full report, click HERE.
“We have those police buttons,” Magana told 8 News Now. “So if anything ever does happen, we just push the button.”
Those buttons, referred to as ‘call boxes,’ along with shuttle services and the “Rebel Safe” app are just a few tools offered to help students stay out of danger when the sun goes down.
“Mostly the people who are stealing the bikes, they need bikes,” Alam said. “A lot of people are homeless in this city.”
Though some told 8 News Now they’ve had their things stolen, for the most part, they believe safety statistics are trending in the right direction.
“I think it’s safe,” UNLV student Ishrad Zaman said. “In this campus area, it’s safe.”
One person-to-person crime category, aggravated assault, did see a rise. Two cases were reported in 2021 while four cases were recorded in 2022.