CWU crime decreases across the board

ELLENSBURG, Wash. -- Students at Central Washington University started the first day of classes Wednesday. They went back to class on what seems to be a safer campus. The K-I-M-A Crime Tracker took a look at the changes. Christina Craig learned what's being done differently on campus.

Sabah Shrinzada is back at CWU for his sophomore year. He's heard the warnings about crime on campus.

"There's been theft going on. Be aware, lock your doors, and lock your cars and everything," said sophomore, Sabah Shrinzada.

Sabah says it happened to him when his phone disappeared from his car. Overall, though, he feels safe.

Bryce Todd says his friend was attacked on campus last year.

"Shock, just cause he's on the baseball team, an athletic guy and he's a nice guy too. I know he wouldn't of have started it for any reason. That's what he said; they just beat the crap out of him," Bryce Todd told KIMA.

KIMA pulled the numbers to what's been happening on campus over the last two years. Crime is down overall, reports of theft decreased by almost half. Total arrests also fell from year to year.

"How are you targeting crime?" asked a KIMA reporter.

"We have done several things. We have done more overtime details and have officers more visible. We've done more bicycle patrols and we've done more foot patrols," Mike Luvera said.

This year, police are focusing on crime prevention programs and increasing the student patrol program. There was also a campus safety course for every freshman.

Campus police told Action News bikes and electronics are the most common things stolen. Signs like this posted throughout campus, warn students to keep track of their valuables.

"Do you think being a smaller campus also has other advantages?" asked a KIMA reporter.

"Absolutely," Luvera responded.

Not everything's getting better. There is one troubled spot. Police report there's been an increase in car thefts.

Campus police tell K-I-M-A that most of their calls come from students complaining about other students.