Author: Donovan Dennis
The Athletics department’s burglary saga continues after thieves struck Spencer Fieldhouse during the Tiger baseball games against Willamette University Feb. 13. This theft, which came after the women’s basketball team was burgled Jan. 12, marks the latest in a developing trend of break-ins of campus locker rooms.
According to the Campus Safety daily crime log, the theft occurred around 11 a.m., during the baseball team’s first game of the day against Willamette. While the boys in orange took down the Bearcats, campus safety officer Barry Hardin took down the details of the heist.
“I can’t say for certain whether this was the same person or not, but the circumstances were similar,” Hardin said. “This time they got $200 from the coach and the cell phones of both umpires. […] Easily concealable items were stolen. It seems like the suspects only targeted certain items after getting to the location.”
According to Hardin, one of the doors to the field house had been left open during Saturday’s game, and the thieves took advantage of that opportunity to make off with the coach‘s and umpires’ personal items.
The robbery in the women’s basketball locker room also occurred while the team was in action. Athletics has addressed several security concerns within Athletics facilities, according to Director of Athletics Jamie Hoffman.
“At this point, we cannot connect the thefts,” Chief of Campus Safety Victor Clay said via email.
According to Hardin, overall theft on the Occidental campus has not increased this school year, but the Athletics facilities crimes are of a more high-profile nature. In his ten years with the college, Hardin cannot recall a theft at Spencer Fieldhouse. To combat crime on campus, Campus Safety increased and modified their patrolling.
“We’ll be doing more foot patrols, and I’ll be riding my little segway up there more often,” Hardin said. “Especially during games. I know that when nobody is there, the doors are going to be locked.”
To prevent these actions in the future, Clay asks the community to assist Campus Safety in their preventative measures, as these unfortunate occurrences serve as reminders that the campus is not immune to crime.
“[Campus Safety] is not happy with the frequency or the boldness of the suspects committing crimes on our campus,” Clay said.
At the end of the day, it often comes down to the simple things like keeping doors closed and locking up belongings, Hardin said.
“We’re just advising everyone to keep their doors locked, like we do with the residence halls,” Hardin said. “Athletics has had to learn a lesson the hard way, and since this happened they have been doing a really good job of it.”
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