School Thieves May Target Your Child’s New Electronics


UPDATED: Friday January 3, 2014 9:03 AM

Reading, writing… and robbery?!

Theft can take place anywhere and that includes your child's school.

After the holidays, police say students can be targeted for the shiny, new electronics left for them under the Christmas tree.

If your child got a new cell phone, or the latest tablet to hit the market this Christmas, it could make them a target this new year.

Some school districts headed back to class Thursday, and what's in their backpack could make the students victims.

"A school is basically a little community of its own and people commit thefts there the same way they commit thefts outside of school," said Westerville Police Sgt. Charles Chandler.

Just like your home or car could be a target for thieves, your child's valuable possessions on school property are also vulnerable.

Many of those thefts take place in school lockers, often left unlocked or unsecured, and local law enforcement says they are a particular target now.

"Cell phones, you should keep them on your person, or locked in a locked locker. Don't leave them in your book bag with your book bag setting out in the lunch room," Sgt. Chandler said. "Be a hard target. Don't make it easy for people to take your new presents you just got for Christmas."

Policy on what is, and what isn't, allowed on school property varies from district to district.

In Worthington, where students returned to class Thursday morning from winter break, the board of education prohibits the use of wireless devices like iPods and cell phones, but doesn't restrict students from having them.

"I would suggest first of all that they keep it on their person at all times if that's possible. If it's not possible, they need to keep it in their bag, in a locked locker," said Sgt. Chandler.

Police advise registering your child's device, and if possible, installing an app that will track the device if it's lost or stolen.

A Worthington Schools spokesperson said that district has seen a rise in locker break-ins in recent years, along with the rising popularity of electronic devices.

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