NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - New Orleans police search for a man they believe is responsible for breaking into women's homes while they sleep. All five home invasions happened in the past four days in the university area Uptown.
"It's a disease that he gets excitement out of going out for the hunt," Tulane criminologist Wade Schindler said.
Schindler has studied thousands of burglary cases. He's convinced that the man behind the string of crimes targeting single women is mentally ill and could become more aggressive.
"Statistics show us this is one of the foundations, getting started toward a serial-type person, yes," Schindler said.
At 3 a.m. Monday, a student who lives in the 1100 block of Broadway woke to find a man standing in her room. He then proceeded to climb into bed with her.
"I yelled at him to get out of the house," the victim said. "He didn't move, and then I yelled at him again to get out of the house. Then he got up, walked downstairs."
On Sunday at about 5 a.m., a similar incident happened to some Tulane students on Lowerline.
"She's like, 'can you please leave now?' And he pulled his hand up and there's a big bread knife kinda. She thought it was a serrated knife," another victim said.
The only description police have released is the suspect is a white male with dark hair.
Schindler stresses how important it is for crime victims to pay attention to detail.
"Does he have any scars on his hands? Tattoos? Anything like that, because that's a dead ringer for the police."
Some of the homes the man is accused of breaking into were unlocked.
"I'm just lucky to not have anything worse happen to me," one of the victims said.
Schindler advises women to be proactive until police catch the man.
"You want assurances that those locks are working, that that gate lock is working, that those lights that come on when somebody walks, that they actually come on," Schindler said.
Simple steps, he said, to stay safe.
In addition to Lowerline and Broadway streets, the other areas police believe the man hit are in the 7600 block of Oak Street and the 1700 block of South Carrollton Avenue.