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UMHB student loses two years worth of research after car robbery in Belton

Posted at 10:34 PM, Feb 14, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-14 23:35:51-05

Absolutely devastated, it’s the feeling Mandy Franks felt after her car was broken into last week. Just two years ago, her car was stolen on the UMHB campus.

"I was maybe within 200 feet away from my car the whole time so I figured my stuff my stuff will be ok in there,” said Mandy.

Mandy said she was doing a photo shoot at a local park in Belton. She said her client's car was also robbed.

“They took my backpack, laptop, driver’s license, my debit card, my credit card, my ReMarkable tablet,” said Mandy.

Mandy said most of her stolen items can be replaced, but her research cannot.

“I was telling my family this is more important than the bachelor's degree that I’m working for,” said Mandy.

Two years of bio-medical research, stripped from her vehicle.

“I’ve been spending time in the lab, in the libraries making posters and presentations,” said Mandy.

To make matters worse, she was one of two UMHB students selected to present their research at the Texas Academy of Science Meeting in Houston, which is two weeks from now. Despite the hardship with the help of her professors, family, and friends.

“There are better people out there that can help her along the way. There’s a lot of bad people but there’s more good people,” said Mandy’s Boyfriend Blyane Haney.

She was able to recover some of her research and get back on track.

“Luckily I’ve been emailing my professor throughout this whole thing and I’ve been sending her updates and I’ve been taking a couple of pictures of my work,” said Mandy.

Even though she is on a tight timeframe, Mandy is ready to present her work. Now she is telling everyone to lock their doors, keep their valuables hidden, and always keep an eye on their car.