Student has phone stolen amid string of petty thefts on campus

A Cosumnes River College student had her smartphone stolen by suspects in a moving vehicle while on campus March 2.

Zuleyma Trujillo, a 22-year-old communications major, was approached by a middle aged, African American couple in a dark blue vehicle on at 3:45 p.m. near the west stairs of the CRC main campus.

Trujillo said the couple claimed they were on campus to pick up their niece and approached her for directions. The couple proceeded to ask Trujillo if they could borrow her cell phone to make a call, even offering her a dollar to use it.

After Trujillo declined the dollar and let the couple use her phone, they immediately drove away with the black Samsung Galaxy Note 3.

“I used a phone that was close by to call my husband and tell him to cancel the phone to get it disconnected,” Trujillo said.

Trujillo has since filed a police report, but no suspects have been charged due to limited information, said Los Rios Police Sgt. Brian Washington.

Three cases of petty theft at CRC have been reported in the month of March alone, according to the Los Rios Police Department crime logs.

The Los Rios Police Department website says that “opportunity theft is the most prevalent crime on any college campus” and suggest several tips to prevent yourself from being a victim.

“Number one, be aware of your environment and everything that’s around you,” Washington said. “I see a lot of students with their heads down, texting and things like that.”

However, not all students on campus practice these safety tips.

“I haven’t thought to take any precautions, I don’t even have a case on my phone,” said 25-year-old biology major, Nicole Olesen. “You know, sometimes I’ll just be using it out and around. Technically someone could just rip it out of my hand and run away.”

Olesen said she would more than likely still allow someone on campus who appeared to be a student borrow her phone, but would be more skeptical if they were in a moving vehicle.

A similar crime to Trujillo’s has also occurred on American River College’s campus by a couple fitting the same description but in a different car, Washington said.

“I think that there should be more, you know, cops going around and checking around for cars that are suspicious,” Trujillo said. “I think there should be more surveillance around the parking lots.”

Trujillo said she remained phoneless for about a week, and is still waiting for police to contact her back regarding the suspects being found and charged.

“As for the cell phone snatched from the car, if someone asks to borrow your cell phone, I would tell them no,” Washington said. “Offer to dial the number for them and put it on speaker, or stand back and hold the phone. If that’s not good enough for the person, they can take their business elsewhere.”