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String of thefts leave Beloit students uneasy


Brad Star/The Round Table

A plague of robberies has descended upon Beloit College recently, and several students have suffered as a result. Many types of items seem to have been targeted, although a singular person or group has yet to be identified as the culprit. While multiple dorms have seen thefts, Peet Hall in particular has struggled with the issue the most.       

A majority of the robberies were reported on two nights in particular: Friday, Oct. 21 and Sunday, Nov. 6. During the first wave of thefts on Oct. 21, several residents of Peet noticed their belongings had been stolen shortly after someone set off the fire alarm by removing a fire extinguisher from its case at around 10 p.m.; it is still unclear whether the incidents were related. On Nov. 6, the Beloit College Student Group Facebook page was flooded with reports of robberies — most of which occurred in Peet — between 5 and 10 p.m.

“[The] robbery took place at around 8 p.m.,” said Tallulah Shepherd’19, a Peet resident who fell victim to one of the robberies on Nov. 6. “I was not in my room at the time, but I was still in the building, so I hadn’t locked my doors.

“My PlayStation 4, two of its controllers and my friend’s Chromebook were stolen. The TV was left; presumably it was a little awkward to carry.”

Some students reported they didn’t immediately notice that they had been robbed.

“[The] room actually looked fine when I got back,” Shepherd said. “It took me a while to notice what happened. A couple drawers were left open, but I didn’t think anything of it until I realized.

“I reported the incident to both security and police; both seemed hopeful that there was a chance I would get these things back.”

Beloit College security officers reported around 9 p.m. on Nov. 6 that they found two non-students lurking around campus who were in possession of items consistent with some of those that had been stolen from students. Security confiscated the items and several students managed to retrieve their belongings.

“There is a strong belief that this is not a student, but some kids from town,” Shepherd said. “Please don’t go being suspicious or hateful to other people in your buildings or classes, because right now that’s not what we need.”

Other items that have reportedly been stolen from dorms include wallets (along with money, IDs, and debit and credit cards), speakers, book bags, alcoholic beverages, prescription medication and loose change.

While Peet seems to have taken a brunt of the damage, Aldrich, Blaisdell and Whitney halls have also suffered from thefts.

Dorm rooms are not the only areas that have been victimized by robberies. Security reported multiple vehicle break-ins starting in late September and throughout October. Students have also had their bikes and skateboards stolen while not attending to them.

Security and police are urging students to lock their doors regardless of how long they plan to be away from their room. As for vehicle break-ins, they recommend not leaving any valuables in plain sight, and to install an alarm if the car does not already have one.

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