University Police solving campus-area burglaries

CHAMPAIGN-URBANA, Illinois – Burglaries tend to increase in the campus area during the summer while students are away from their apartments and vehicles – but those cases are getting solved and some of the property returned to their owners through good investigative work and collaboration with neighboring police departments.

Since June 1, more than 30 burglaries have been reported to the University of Illinois Police Department. Unlocked vehicles, vacant apartments and construction sites have been the main targets for burglars.

Three people who are believed to have been responsible for at least a dozen or more of those burglaries have been arrested.

The most recent arrest made around 2 a.m. Wednesday, after a Mahomet Police officer stopped a vehicle that University Police were seeking in connection with an earlier burglary. Mahomet Police told University Police that they had the vehicle, and its teenage driver had acknowledged his involvement in 10 to 15 vehicle burglaries.

University Police had been seeking that vehicle after using security cameras and automated license plate readers to identify a suspect in a burglary that occurred overnight July 7-8 in the 100 block of East Green Street, Champaign. In that incident, it was reported that a wallet and credit cards had been stolen from the vehicle, and one of the credit cards was later used fraudulently at local retail stores.

Separately, a 20-year-old man was arrested on July 5 for his involvement in several burglaries near campus. One of those burglaries involved several thousands of dollars’ worth of tools being taken from a construction site. Another involved cash and credit cards being stolen from a vehicle.

The offender, Clayton J. Mabry, 20, of Urbana, was identified after a detective and UIPD’s security analyst used security camera footage to identify a suspect in several burglaries. That information was distributed to area law enforcement agencies, and a Champaign County Sheriff’s Office deputy informed University Police that he recently had a case matching what was described.

The deputy provided Mabry’s name as the suspected offender. That information was supported by data from automated license plate readers in the area.

On July 5, an Urbana Police officer saw Mabry and was aware that he had warrants for his arrest.

The coordination between neighboring jurisdictions led to Mabry’s arrest on several University Police cases and others.

A third case resulted in immediate arrest July 10, when a man returning home from work discovered his apartment in the 600 block of South First Street, Champaign, had been burglarized within the past few hours. A laptop computer, video gaming system and cannabis products were missing from the apartment. The victim and his roommate provided possible suspect information based on a recent encounter they had.

GPS tracking information on the stolen computer prompted officers to travel to the 300 block of West University Avenue, Urbana, where they attempted to stop a man – later identified as Maurice L. Robinson, 26, no address provided – who matched the description given by the residents. Robinson initially ran when ordered to stop but was detained after a short foot pursuit. Upon searching the bags Robinson had been carrying with him, police found the stolen property and brass knuckles.

Robinson was arrested for residential burglary, resisting a police officer and unlawful use of a weapon. He was also issued a no-trespassing notice for all U. of I. property.

University Police are encouraging community members – on campus and off – to make sure your vehicles, doors and windows are locked at all times, even if you are at home or only leaving for a few moments. Locking doors is the easiest and most effective way to secure and protect your property.

University Police continue to seek information on campus-area burglaries, both solved and unsolved. Anyone with information or who has yet to report a burglary is encouraged to contact University Police at 217-333-1216. Witnesses may remain anonymous by calling Champaign County Crime Stoppers at 217-373-8477 (373-TIPS), by visiting or by providing information through the P3 Tips mobile app available on iOS and Android. All messages to Crime Stoppers are electronically stripped of identifying information and forwarded to police by an independent third party.

Please note, those arrested are presumed innocent until proved guilty, and formal charges may change as cases are adjudicated.