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The Scarlet & Black

The Scarlet & Black

Campus responds to 10/10 damages and thefts

From several dozen thefts on North Campus to hundreds of dollars of vandalism in various residence halls, this year’s 10/10 mayhem has made many Grinnellians question the level of security of their valuables.

According to Director of Security Stephen Briscoe, the weekend celebrations brought a record number of thefts and damages reported to the Campus Security office, with over 66 complaints and reports filed.
“People were spraying extinguishers—there were thefts, fireworks, people showing up who shouldn’t be here on campus getting into residence halls,” Briscoe said. “I don’t know how to describe it. Just a busy weekend. There is no record that comes close to that weekend, regarding the number of reports.”

According to campus security, among the complaints were reports of stolen bicycles, feces smeared in Loose Hall bathroom, broken glass windows and student property theft, resulting in hundreds of dollars of fines.
“People were throwing chairs into the roads, as if they were rioting,” Briscoe said.
President Russell K. Osgood, along with other campus administrators, said he was not pleased Sunday morning following the festivities.

“10/10 has never been a proud moment in Grinnell history during my 11 years at the college,” Osgood said. “However, this was the first year I recall that 10/10 had such a large number of thefts.”
With over 20 different reports of stolen computers and other various electronics, victims of theft are “angry” and “hurt” regarding the matter, according to Anne Ross ’12.

“We had an Xbox and all our computers in our common room. In the morning, we woke up and found our DVDs all over the floor, with the TV stand messed up and the shelf ripped out,” Ross said. “After we cleaned up the mess, we found one laptop and Xbox missing.”
After the campus-wide celebration, Ross was just one of many dorm inhabitants that realized some of their valuables, usually expensive electronics, had been stolen.

On Oct. 14, the Wednesday following 10/10, the Student Government Association (SGA) held a joint board session with the 10/10 party organizers regarding the amount of damage on campus. Ultimate Frisbee co-captains Ben Finkelstein ’10, Andrew Otto ’10 and Nathan Levin ’10. Along with the captains, Student Affairs and SGA addressed their concern with the outcome of this year’s 10/10 and began discussion on how to prevent theft occurrences and reduce the vandalization of campus property in the coming years.

“We assured SGA that we were brainstorming with the administration to fix the problems,” Finkelstein said. “We proposed better communication between 10/10 organizers and the SA’s of the floor[s] whose lounges we use. We encouraged better party preparation, and for SAs to tell their hall mates to be on the look out for people who don’t belong on those floors.”
While SGA is in its “brainstorming phase,” said SGA President Harry Kresja ’10, there is a general plan to educate and make aware to the Grinnell student body safety guidelines for 10/10.
“SGA will be working with 10/10 organizers for next year to put together and present a guide to students, so that 10/10 can be more smooth in the future,” Kresja said.
“We’re addressing these issues in a very Grinnellian type of way,” said Dean of Students Travis Greene. “We’re communicating with the larger Grinnell community by discussing what we can do to avoid these issues in the future.”
Self-governance was a key topic of discussion at the symposia regarding the frenzied 10/10 activity.
“It was clear to me and others that self-governance did not play out the way it should have on Saturday night,” Greene said.
Though it has taken some time, fortunately some students have recently claimed responsibility for damages and fines.
“Some people have already come forward to accept responsibility for damage and fees, however the 10/10 organizers have hefty fines still attributed to them,” Greene said. “We are hoping more people will continue to step up and accept responsibility for damages they did incur.”
Unclaimed campus damages will ultimately be at the cost of the event organizers, as stated in alcohol and lounge contracts.
Greene hopes that 10/10 will be restored to the unifying celebration it always has been. “The message for next year is to have some fun and build some community,” Greene said. “But let’s not do it at the cost of respect and trustworthiness and other components of self-governance.”

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