It’s 1 p.m. and for many of the students here at GCC, it’s the end of the day. Many walk passed the student center and head toward the elevators that transport them to the parking structure, where their cars await.
The parking structure has been open since the 2007 fall semester, and since then it has been watched over by the GCC police department, but more particularly by the police cadets.
According to the campus police department, there have been zero motor vehicle thefts in 2005, one in 2006, and three in 2007.
While the statistics are encouraging, an unidentified person was recently caught trying to get into a student’s vehicle earlier this month.
The police said a witness had seen the person trying to lift the door handle of the car.
Campus police then showed up, but did not make an arrest.
The investigation was then forwarded to Paul Schlossman, head of student activities, for review, but could not reveal any information.
So do students actually feel that the parking structure is a safe place to park their cars?
“It’s pretty safe, they just need to make another structure” said Artack Ayvazyan, a 22-year-old accounting major. “Luckily I haven’t had any problems.”
Avyazyan usually parks across the street from campus and occasionally in the Civic Auditorium lot.
“Right here it’s darker and less safe. I’d assume that the parking structure would be safer,” said Ayvazyan.
When asked about the cadets who patrol the parking structure, Ayvazyan seemed astonished to know that there were actually cadets walking around in the parking structure because he had seen never seen one before.
The cadets get 34 hours of training and six months of on-the-field training. Not only do they patrol the parking structure, but they also issue parking citations and assist police officers when there is an emergency response.
“They really help out,” said Police Captain Nidal Kobaissi, “although some people don’t think so.”
One student who feels this way is Felipe, a criminal justice major in his early 20s, who would not disclose his last name.
Felipe, who parks his car in the parking structure for most of the day, had gotten his Honda symbol stolen from his car while attending classes at the college.
“The cadets are probably looking out for tickets, but not about safety,” said Felipe, in concerns to the safety of cars.
Other students, such as Mike Timo, a 20-year-old biology major, believe that the parking structure is very safe.
“It’s really [safe],” said Timo. “Glendale is too safe!”
And much like other parking facilities, crime is always going to occur.
“You’re always gonna have those people trying to break in someone’s car,” said Christy Timmons, a 19-year-old English literature and theater major.
No matter where a person may park their car, there is always the possibility that the vehicle will not be in the condition that it was left when the person returns.
Furthermore, unlike other parking facilities, there is a cadet station in the parking structure to help keep an eye out on things.
While statistics show the number of motor vehicle thefts have slightly increased since 2006, Kobaissi says that “overall things are smooth” at GCC.