Are you watching your valuables?

by Mandy Frohling

A string of purse snatchings that started last November has left Simpson students and faculty keeping a tighter leash on their personal belongings.

Cindy Hamilton, a faculty member in McNeill Hall, knows first hand of this purse thief.

On Dec. 18, Hamilton had left her desk for a few minutes in the morning, only to come back to see an assumed student leaving her desk.

Soon after, she noticed her purse was gone.

“I then called security and they called the police,” she said.

While going to the restroom, a male employee found her purse in the toilet, with her credit cards and personal belongings ruined.

“He found a bank envelope and took the money out of that and he took the coins from my coin purse,” Hamilton said.

She says she has not lost trust in the campus, although she does take more precautions everywhere she goes.

The first theft was reported to campus security on Dec. 3, although a similar case was reported in November. A student in Dunn library had her purse stolen and was found later in a study room.

On Jan. 2, a librarian saw a suspicious man on the second floor that fit security’s description of the purse-snatcher. Security came to talk to the man who claimed he was on campus to use the computers.

The suspect later admitted to stealing three purses and was taken into custody.

He was spotted in Amy Robertson Music Center, Carver Science Center, McNeill Hall and Dunn Library. The man’s plan of attack was to ask for an aspirin to see where the purse was and then waited and until the person left their valuables behind.

Frerichs says if you see someone suspicious, please do not hesitate to report it to campus security and stressed the importance of securing your valuables at all times.