September 20, 2000

Lab Reports $5,500 in Computer Theft

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Various computer items were reported stolen last Wednesday from Warren Hall, according to a Cornell Police report.

A Sharp Liquid Crystal Display (LCD) projector and external zip drive were believed to be stolen between Sept. 7 and 13, and valued at approximately $5,500.

The incident was reported by Beatrix Johnson, computer facilities coordinator of Warren Lab.

The LCD projectors are loaned out for use by Agricultural, Resource & Managerial Economics classes and other classes in the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences.

Currently, audiovisual equipment is located in a storage closet, but installing other alarm systems is being investigated. It will cost approximately $7,000 to buy a new projector, according to Johnson.

“We are hoping someone signed it out and forgot to document it, but it would have been back by now,” Johnson said.

The theft of the external zip drive, valued at $160, is believed to have occurred during open hours, Johnson noted. “Someone needed it and just ripped it off,” she said.

Currently Warren Hall is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and is “armed” during nighttime hours only.

“There should be better security here. It should not be left open,” said Adam Zanislak, computer technician for Warren Hall.

Other security measures are being investigated for Warren labs B60 and 160.

One safety network installed throughout computer labs in Cornell is a fiber optic alarm system which runs a fiber optic cable throughout all electronic equipment. “If anything is tampered with, the alarm goes off in the room itself and a silent alarm goes off to the Police,” added Johnson.

Computer labs that utilize this system include Rand Hall, Bradfield Hall, Martha Van Renselear, and Upson Hall.

Rand Hall enacted the fiber optic alarm system two years ago, and since then has had no reported thefts, according to Johnson. It would cost approximately $4,000 to alarm Warren computer labs with the new network.

“We have never had any thefts [in Warren Hall] before, aside from a few mouse pads … it really makes me angry,” Johnson said.

Numerous stolen projectors from Cornell buildings were recovered last spring, totaling approximately $40,000, according to Captain Randy Hausner, assistant director of public safety for Cornell Police.

The Warren Hall case is still under investigation, according to Hausner.

Archived article by Rachel Pessah