Georgetown University's community action team, a plainclothes street crime team, arrested a man around 2 p.m. Wednesday for attempted unlawful entry after he tried to gain access to several residences on the 3700 block of Prospect St. NW.
James McFerguson, who is currently on probation with the DC Courts and was wearing an ankle bracelet at the time of his arrest, had a backpack containing burglary tools like a bolt cutter, pry bars and knives, according to GU Chief of Police and Director of Public Safety (DPS) Jay Gruber.
Gruber said McFerguson knocked on several doors and then tried the doorknob each time. Officers observed him for four or five minutes before stopping and eventually arresting him, according to Gruber.
McFerguson did not appear to have an accomplice and his only "getaway vehicle" was a bicycle, Gruber noted.
He has "an extensive criminal record for burglary and breaking and entering," according to Gruber.
Court records show 43 different cases for a James E. McFerguson, though it is not currently clear if this is the same person arrested Wednesday.
Gruber said the community action team that arrested McFerguson was formed in the spring of 2012.
"We really needed to get down and dirty and stop criminals who were preying on our campus and they just did a phenomenal job," he said.
Their work is part of an effort to stop crime both on and off campus, Gruber explained.
Over the weekend DPS released a warning to students to be alert while in the neighborhood and to keep their doors locked.
Gruber said the arrest Wednesday was unrelated to the incidents that had plagued the campus community in recent weeks.
"He does not match the description for the most recent burglaries," he explained.
However, he said GU is working with other area universities including Gallaudet, American, George Washington and UDC to catch the suspects in those incidents.