The UH Police Department is investigating what may be a single cell phone thief after a series of thefts under the same description occurred in the past two weeks. Three cell phones were stolen last week and two this week at the M.D. Anderson Memorial Library, Melcher Hall and the University Center Satellite dining area.
While it has not been confirmed that the suspect is the same in all cases, similar descriptions have been given.
The perpetrator is thought to be a 18 to 25 year old male of medium height and build, light complexion, short brown hair and no facial hair. In two cases, the additional descriptors of black or clear medium-sized ear gauges, a T-shirt and cargo pants/shorts and a black backpack were given. The perpetrator also went under the name “Michael” in at least two instances.
A friend of one of the complainants provided UHPD with a photo of the suspect that he had captured, right.
The suspect has had the same method of operation in every case. He approaches students, asks to borrow their cell phone and then runs away when the student’s attention is elsewhere.
The suspect has not been violent in any of the cases, but UHPD warns students to exercise caution for this type of fraud. Students are suggested to be careful while using their phones in public and to not give cell phones to strangers, instead directing them to a university office for a phone.
UHPD encourages anyone with information on the subject or the incidents to contact them at 713-743-3333.