Thefts were up slightly at Spring Lake Park High School in September.
“… Thefts continue to plague students and faculty at the high school,” Police Chief Douglas Ebeltoft wrote in his September report to the Spring Lake Park City Council.
“Plague” is not a word that Principal Jane Stevenson would use. “It’s nothing unusual for us,” she said, pointing to the large population and the fact that missing item reports are also filed as thefts.
There were nine reports detailing 11 missing or stolen items in September, according to Officer Karen Fiske, the school resource officer with the Spring Lake Park Police Department. That is slightly above average, which is unusual since students are typically more well-behaved at the beginning of the school year, she said.
Six phones, two iPods, an iPad charger, one wallet and one athletic bag were lost or stolen in September.
“There wasn’t any pattern,” Fiske said.
Most of the time, students leave things in an empty classroom or bathroom, or they leave their lockers open, she said.
“Locking your locker is always helpful,” Stevenson said. She advised against bringing valuables to school and reminded students to be alert and aware.
One cell phone and iPod have been recovered so far.
Stevenson wanted to call attention to positive incidents that are not formally reported: On Halloween, a student called in to say that she discovered an extra iPad in her backpack when she got home.
She said she must have picked it up thinking it was hers and wanted to return it to its rightful owner, according to Stevenson.
“Students are helpful to us,” Stevenson said.
Olivia Koester is at firstname.lastname@example.org