Cornell Police are asking for the public’s help in identifying a man and woman suspected of carrying out a string of thefts on campus and walking away with at least a portion of the nearly $12,000 in computers, debit cards, passports, cash and other valuables reported stolen on Thursday.
Students reported thefts in multiple buildings — Kroch Library, Helen Newman Hall, Noyes Community Center, Statler Hall and Olin Library — between 3 and 10 p.m. on Thursday, according to a CUPD statement and the campus crime log.
Police said a 6-foot white man wearing a fedora and a 5-foot-6-inch white woman — both pictured in security tape images holding backpacks — stole unattended bags holding valuable items and necessities like U.S. passports, keys and textbooks, according to the log.
The 11 bags reported stolen contained half a dozen Apple laptops, purses, an iPad, Beats headphones, drivers licenses and at least one iPhone, according to the log, which also states that two of the backpacks have since been recovered.
Minor thefts are commonplace at Cornell and other college campuses, but the volume and value of the thefts — the crime log estimates thieves made off with $11,777 worth of valuables from nine of the 11 backpacks — is one of the largest one-day heists this academic year.
Cornell Police Chief Kathy Zoner told The Sun that police do not yet know if the man and woman carried out all of the Thursday thefts, but police believe they carried out at least several of them.
Cornell Police have not made any arrests as of Friday afternoon, Zoner said.
Still photos from security footage showed the man wearing a dark jacket, jeans and a gray or black fedora while the woman was wearing a light gray and red jacket, black yoga pants and tall, gray boots.
“Please take steps to protect yourself and your property by not leaving backpacks or other personal property unattended and unsecured,” CUPD said in a statement.
Police asked that anyone with information related to the thefts contact the Cornell Police Department at 607-255-1111.