By Molly Igoe
Three thefts occurred on Sept. 13 and 15 in Gibson Center for the Arts.
The first two thefts took place on Wednesday, Sept. 13. Junior Megan Iacona was one of the students who had their phone stolen. She said that the crew was working on the set for the show “Major Barbara,” and they kept their belongings in the open hallway with the doors to the theater open so they could keep an eye on everything.
Between 3 and 4:30 p.m, another student noticed that her phone and wallet weren’t on the table, and Iacona saw that her phone was missing.
Iacona then used Find My Android to track the whereabouts of her phone, and it took her to the Casey Swim Center, where someone had hidden it on top of a transfusion box.
Iacona was lucky; but the other student’s phone has not been found.
Director of Public Safety Gerald Roderick said that $10 had also been stolen from the student’s wallet.
The second theft occurred on Friday Sept. 15, when a student contacted Public Safety at 7:30 p.m. to report that her purse had been stolen from Gibson.
“The student had placed her backpack in a hallway outside of a classroom. Inside the backpack she had her purse. When she returned to the backpack, she noticed her purse was missing. The purse and its contents were found on campus and turned into Public Safety the next morning. The cash was stolen from the purse,” Roderick said.
Public Safety has been looking at camera data around the location of the facility, according to Roderick, but he said there are no identifiers or leads currently.
Iacona said that crew members now have a cart to put all their belongings on, which they have to bring with them while they work on the set for the play.
Gibson, which Iacona described as “a safe haven for theater students,” is known as a creative space where students who are passionate about the arts can go, but now things are more “intense,” she said.
“Just because people have to keep their stuff on them. It’s not safe to have your phone in your pocket during a work call because we’re around power tools, and picking things up and moving it around,” she said.
Roderick said that because the Johnson Fitness Center is now much harder to gain access to, perpetrators are looking for other areas on campus to target.
“As long as we’re creating opportunities for crime to occur by leaving our belongings unattended, you’re going to be the victim of a crime; when you look at the disruption that occurs when you’re the victim of a crime like that, if it’s your cellphone, you’ve lost all your data, if it’s your laptop, you’ve lost papers, notes, and all academic work. That can be a nightmare,” he said.
Iacona agreed. “If someone takes your phone, they’re basically taking all form of communication from you; your planners and all that stuff. It’s a sense of protection and safety that feels lost.”
To reduce the risk of having your items stolen, Roderick said students should travel lightly so you can carry everything with you.
“Remember and be aware that not everyone has the best intentions,” Iacona said.