Jeff State fights book thefts, increases security - WBRC FOX6 News - Birmingham, AL

Jeff State fights book thefts, increases security

BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) - There are some on college campuses looking for some things other than an education.

Thursday at the Shelby County campus of Jefferson State Community College, police arrested a student for stealing textbooks and then trying to sell the books at the campus bookstore.  Campus police say they usually sees about 20 incidents of textbook thefts at their four campuses each year.

19-year-old Jasmine McCree says textbooks are already expensive.

"I haven't thought about renting them. I want to buy new books. They cost. It's outrageous how much they are,"  McCree said.

That's why the textbooks are targets of thieves.

"Textbooks are outrageous. A hundred to 300 dollars a book. That is why it's a good market for stolen property." Mark Bailey, Director of Campus Safety at Jefferson State Community College said.

Bailey offers some safety tips:

1.    Write your name not just on the binder or cover page but deep inside the book. This allows for future identification.
2.    Put the textbooks and other valuables out of sight.
3.    Lock your vehicle.

"Most  thefts in the parking lot takes place in unlock vehicles." Bailey said.

If you are crook and you think you can make quick cash getting an expensive book well a here is a word of warning, if you try that out here at Jeff State, they have gone high tech to get you.

"We were able to buy 300 cameras and put in a server plan to control our camera services." Bailey said.

Thanks to $100,000 federal grant the police department put up cameras inside of buildings and some outside at all four Jeff State Campuses. There is also a statewide campus alert system in place.

"Now we have more more eyes on what's going on and we can intervene much more rapidly" Bailey said.

Meanwhile, McCree says she will be taking more steps to protect her books and other property.

"I am definitely. I don't want anyone stealing my books." McCree said.

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