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Archive for Thursday, December 27, 2001

Police investigate sorority thefts

December 27, 2001

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Lawrence police aren't laughing about an apparent fraternity prank that landed two Kansas University students in jail after they were nabbed atop a sorority house.

The two students were arrested during the weekend after a burglary report at the Gamma Phi Beta sorority house, 1339 West Campus Road.

Police came to the scene and found the men, ages 22 and 21, on the roof of the sorority. Officers ordered the men to come down the fire escape. Near the men they found what was believed to be the only item taken in the burglary: a framed composite valued at $1,000. The composite was a grouping of photographs of the Gamma Phi members.

The men apparently entered the sorority by opening a window. They were arrested about 5:30 a.m. Saturday. Charges are pending. They were released on their own recognizance a few hours after their arrests and were ordered to appear Jan. 10 in Douglas County District Court.

Police say they're looking for two other suspects thought to have been involved in similar thefts at two other sororities where burglars also took framed group pictures.

Police were called Saturday by Ginny Hayward, the sorority's house director. She told police she had heard suspicious noises, Sgt. Mike Pattrick said.

The 22-year-old who was arrested had an address listed on the Douglas County Jail log and in the KU student directory as 1501 Sigma Nu Place, the address for the Sigma Nu fraternity. Only a Denver address was shown on the jail log for the 21-year-old suspect. But a KU directory showed him to have a Kentucky Street address.

In a subsequent investigation, police found the two other sorority composites at Sigma Nu. The composites belonged to Delta Gamma, 1015 Emery Road, and Kappa Delta, 1602 High Drive, Pattrick said.

No information was released about the two other suspects or the continuing investigation.

"It is not thought of as a prank," Pattrick said, explaining the police view of the thefts. "There is a victim in this."

No one could be reached for comment at the sorority or fraternity houses. KU's winter recess officially began Friday. Spring semester classes start Jan. 17.

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