INDIANA — Officials at two Indiana universities are investigating separate cases of newspaper theft that occurred during the schools’ respective homecoming festivities.
About 7,000 copies of The Daily News at Ball State University and 600 copies of The Indiana Statesman atIndiana State University at Terre Haute were stolen from distribution racks this week.
The Daily News adviser Vince Filak said he received phone calls Oct. 19 informing him that distributions bins were empty in 10 campus buildings. Some copies of the newspaper were later found in trash bins next to distribution racks. Newspaper staff members have filed a report with the campus police department.
Filak said the stolen issue was “benign” in content, but there has been speculation that the theft could be part of a homecoming prank.
“This is one of those incidents that defies logic,” he said. “There’s no sense in my mind why this issue and why this many [were stolen].”
At Indiana State University at Terre Haute, copies of the student newspaper the Indiana Statesman disappeared from newsstands just hours after distribution on Oct. 16.
But Merv Hendricks, the paper’s adviser, said that newspapers were only missing from certain distribution spots. Staff members later placed extra copies of the newspaper in the empty racks, but those also disappeared. Editors reported the theft and campus police are currently reviewing surveillance tapes.
Hendricks said he is unable to determine any financial loss from ad revenues because there is some uncertainty over the number of issues stolen.
“There was non-monetary value lost,” he said. “There was homecoming news and advertising, plus the hours of student work that was put into it.”
He said there is also some speculation that the incident was part of a homecoming prank.