Students asked to be more vigilant after two men pose as exterminators to get into OSU residence hall

COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH)–Ohio State University police say they need the public’s help identifying two con artists.

On December 4, two men convinced a student to let them in a Torres House, a residence hall, where they allegedly stole electronics from one dorm room.

Here is how police said they were able to pull it off. The two men dressed in disguises, knock on a side door of the meeting room without showing a Buck ID swipe card and a student let them in.

“Based on the way they were dressed and their mannerisms, they convinced one of the students they were there as exterminators and they had a work order to spray for ants in his room,” said Capt. David Rose with  Ohio State University Police.

Monday Release 2-1-16 3Pictures pulled from high-resolution surveillance video show the two entering the Torres House outside door and entering the lobby.

Both suspects are described as black males between 20-30 and well-groomed.

The first suspect has a dark complexion, short afro hair, a mustache, wire-framed glasses, wearing a light colored long-sleeved button up shirt with a “US Bank” logo on the front left chest area, dark pants and brown dress shoes.

The second suspect has lighter complexion, light beard, mustache and goatee, muscular build, wearing a long-sleeved gray pullover shirt, black pants, gray and white tennis shoes, orange safety vest, carrying a black backpack and a white insect sprayer canister.

OSU has been working with a program called “Don’t Tailgate.”

Monday Release 2-1-16 1It’s not the game-day kind or the kind you see on the road. “Tailgating” in this case is letting others slide in behind you when you swipe your way into the building. The school is warning students and staff not to let any stranger into the building who does not display a Buck ID.

“My roommate has mentioned to me multiple times, ‘keep everything locked, take your ID with you all the time, don’t just leave your doors open.’ I think it definitely put people on alert,” said Kate Jennings, who lives in Torres House.

NBC4 spent a short time near the main entrance and saw some students tailgating, but the message is getting through to others.

“I just want to make sure all students are being aware of who they are letting in, and if they don’t belong, don’t let them in without a valid ID,” said Julian Shockley, an OSU freshman.

If you recognize the two suspects you can call Crime Stopper at 614-461-TIPS or text your tip to CRIMES, keyword CMH.

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