NOPD arrests burglary suspect

Nia Porter

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Several burglaries have taken place around the university area over the past couple of weeks, but they shouldn’t be much of a problem any longer according to the New Orleans Police Department. The suspected perpetrator has been arrested.

Reports of home burglaries started pouring in from Tulane students around late January. Due to this spike in residential crimes, the Tulane and New Orleans police departments strengthened their presence around the area and were able to find the suspect involved, according to second district Police Commander Paul Noel.

Richard Barnes, 37, is the man police believe to be responsible for the majority of the burglaries around campus. Noel said he was arrested Feb. 12, trying to break into an apartment on Lowerline street.

Barnes, who has several burglary convictions, was arrested once before for burglarizing homes in 2009.

The NOPD is expecting this arrest will put an end to most of these burglaries around Tulane and Loyola’s campuses.

“I believe that by finding these criminals and putting out arrest warrants, we have realized that what we’re doing is effective,” Noel said.

Currently, the NOPD does not plan to patrol the university area any more than they already have. However, they are offering some important advice to students living in the area.

“Lock your doors,” Noel said. “I can’t stress this enough.”

He said that when the NOPD get calls about break-ins or burglaries, almost all of the homes who report them are unlocked.

Criminals often target university neighborhoods more, because they know that the average college student has a significant amount of technology.

“Criminals know that there is a high value to these things and that they can easily be sold,” Noel said.

According to Captain Roger Pinac of the Loyola University Police Department, the only reports they received were from Tulane students. However, he does not think they were targeted due to their school affiliation.

“In my experience, students are not as focused on the care and maintenance of their property and are more dependent on landlords as opposed to homeowners, making them an easy target,” Pinac said.

Although no Loyola students were affected by these incidences, several students around Loyola have their opinions about crime in the Uptown area.

“I get email alerts from Loyola’s police department about crimes around campus, but they have never really made me concerned,” Makenna Mall, a sophomore history major said. “I only have felt a little nervous when I am out and about uptown at odd hours, but I feel that way pretty much anywhere at 1 a.m.”

Tai Teamer, general business freshman, hasn’t experienced any crimes first hand, but she does think more needs to be done around campus to ensure the safety of students.

“I haven’t seen any issues personally,” Teamer said. “However, I do believe that there should be more campus police patrol all over campus, especially in the garages and quads at night, because campus activity doesn’t end when the sun goes down.”

Nia Porter can be reached at

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