One La Crosse woman is turning to social media after she says she was the victim of a break-in.
In a Facebook post on Monday night in the UW La Crosse Off Campus Housing group, the young woman details her experience with an apartment break-in at her residence near King Street and 8th Street. She says a man crawled through her broken dining room window with a flashlight. Her cat woke her up in time to call the police, but the man left the scene before they arrived.
"Never hesitate to call police. Ultimately, we're here 24 hours a day," said Sgt. Tom Walsh with the La Crosse Police Department. "We're more than willing to come out and ensure that you're safe and your residence is safe."
That Facebook post has been shared nearly 860 times. It goes on to say that another attempted break-in happened two houses down just three hours later at a property owned by Kevin Mack.
"I need my tenants to be safe and to feel safe in their everyday lives," Mack said.
He did not hesitate to increase security at his rental properties after hearing about the attempted break-in.
"We're just in the process of improving lighting and locks and installing security cameras in the common areas, parking areas just to better keep track of who is coming and going," said Mack.
Walsh says it is a good reminder to keep your homes and businesses secure by locking windows and doors along with keeping the exterior well lit.
"Make your residence as undesirable for a criminal to want to go to as possible," he said.
Walsh also urges people to practice situational awareness.
"When you pull in and park or you're walking to your apartment, just be aware if there's someone out walking around, looking at you, or paying attention. Just be really, really situationally aware," said Walsh.
He says it is better to be safe than sorry.
Although the woman in this post had a relatively happy ending, she says she lost one very important thing: her sense of security. She hopes to make sure that nobody else finds themselves in the same situation.
Walsh says another key piece to safety is communication. He says it never hurts to text or call the person you just left to let them know you made it to your destination safely.
He warns people to limit the number of posts they put on social media. He says that although it is fun to post what we are doing, who we are with, and where we are at, bad guys pay attention. That information could make you a target.