Cerritos College suffers from multiple break-ins

The+student+center+had+one+of+the+two+ATMs+on+campus%2C+the+empty+wall+now+shows+a+flyer+with+a+map+to+the+only+ATM+on+campus.+After+a+break-in+to+the+student+center+prior+to+starting+the+Spring+2017+semester+Cerritos+College+administration+decided+to+remove+the+ATM.+Photo+credit%3A+Perla+Lara

Perla Lara

The student center had one of the two ATMs on campus, the empty wall now shows a flyer with a map to the only ATM on campus. After a break-in to the student center prior to starting the Spring 2017 semester Cerritos College administration decided to remove the ATM. Photo credit: Perla Lara

Monique Nethington, Editor in Chief

The winter break proved to be a trying time for Cerritos College campus, as it suffered two separate break-ins.

The break-ins occurred in the Student Center and the Physical Science and Technology Building.

It is unclear if the two crimes are connected, however the Cerritos College Police Department was alerted to both crimes in the early hours of December 23.

At approximately 1:00 a.m., officers were alerted to the Student Center break-in first and that the perpetrators attempted to get away with cash from the SchoolsFirst ATM located in the food court.

According to Chief of Police Tom Gallivan, “The ATM security alarm was [enabled], which then alerted the security company who then alerted [campus police].”

When officers arrived at the scene they discovered that the individual(s) gained access through a glass window panel near the north door of the center.

It appeared the perpetrators, or perpetrator, did not walk away with anything as the ATM was emptied the previous day and no cash was in the machine.

Other than the window panel being used for the break-in, no other damages had been reported.

Gallivan speculated that this theft could be part of a ring targeting community colleges after a similar incident occurred on the El Camino College campus.

Several hours later, at 6:10 a.m., officers responded to the Physical Science and Technology Building after a Facilities staff member reported a break-in.

The way in which the break-in occurred was unclear only that two faculty offices had been invaded.

The perpetrators were able to make away with a brand new computer, as well as a change jar.

Campus police is still waiting on responses from faculty who occupy those offices to see if anything else was taken.

As per protocol, CCPD is working in conjunction with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department crime scene unit in collecting evidence that will help lead to an arrest.

Gallivan did point out that thanks to the new blue security phones (equipped with cameras) they were able to obtain a photograph of a suspect.

“We have a poor, grainy photograph,” he said, “However, we are not releasing the photo at this time as we attempt [to identify the subject].”

In response to the recent events Gallivan continued to say, “[They] will continue to look for new ways to increase security around campus and [staying visible on campus].”

No other comments could be made about the crimes at this time, as the investigations are ongoing.

This is a developing story and will be updated when more information is released.