Police respond to multiple car break-ins on Bear Blvd. near Missouri State University

Published: May. 24, 2022 at 8:18 PM CDT
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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3) - Police are investigating a series of car break-ins at a parking lot on the Missouri State campus.

Thieves hit more than 16 vehicles at 921 E. Bear Boulevard on May 19. SPD says not all of the cars were damaged or had things stolen. Some of those cars were left unlocked and had items stolen. Other vehicles had nothing stolen but were damaged due to the break-ins.

The same day, nine vehicles were broken into at 533 E. Bear Boulevard at an apartment complex.

Zachary McCubbins lives at that apartment complex and had his car broken into twice.

Both times his driver’s side window was smashed.

After the first time, he paid more than $260 to get it repaired, and he’ll have to do that all over again after his car was broken into again on May 24.

“As a college student, it’s kind of hard to make ends meet,” McCubbins says. “For here, I live with my fiancée, so we share rent, and that’s about half of our rent money right there.”

McCubbins says two times in less than one week, someone broke into his car parked outside his apartment.

He doesn’t know what he’ll do if it happens again.

“I don’t know. It just felt like dread,” McCubbins says. “Just hearing that and knowing I would have to come back and do something with my vehicle.”

Nothing significant was stolen either time. McCubbins says he always takes valuables out of his car and locks it.

However, he still fell victim to the crime and says he almost wishes he had left the car unlocked.

McCubbins says that would’ve saved him from paying to repair his smashed window not once but twice.

“Stuff like this affects the lives of many people,” McCubbins says. “Many people who can’t even really afford it. College students of all things. They’re worried about tuition, how they’re going to get their groceries. Worrying about a car five days in a row just isn’t something that people should have to be financially worried about.”

Cris Swaters with the Springfield Police Department says that theft from a vehicle can happen in a large parking lot of cars.

The department urges everyone to take anything of value out of their car.

However, keeping your car clean can also make a difference.

“If your vehicle is dirty, if it’s messy, if it’s cluttered, even if there’s nothing of value in the car, someone doesn’t know that until they’ve damaged your vehicle and have rifled through your things,” Swaters says.

McCubbins plans to live at the apartment complex again for summer classes and into the upcoming school year.

With that comes concerns over parking, especially after multiple cars experienced break-ins that day.

“I know there are a few people here who witnessed it, and they said that they were pretty covered, so I can’t imagine it’s an isolated incident,” McCubbins says. “I just hope that they’re caught, and it stops happening.”

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