Victim hopes to shed light on theft

When University graduate student Mo Fahnestock noticed his Olympus IS 10 camera missing from Northrop Mall during commencement ceremonies on May 16, he thought it was gone forever.
The camera, which was labeled with Fahnestock’s address and phone number, was left unattended on a table for a few minutes between 12:30 and 1 p.m. when it was taken.
Two weeks later, Fahnestock received his developed pictures in the mail, along with an anonymous handwritten note explaining that the camera had been turned into the lost and found at The Minnesota Daily.
“We called several times, but it wasn’t there,” said Fahnestock. The Daily does not have a lost and found.
Fahnestock has reported the theft to the University Police, but has done some investigating of his own.
The postal meter used to send the prints was traced to the law firm of Meagher and Geer, located in the Multifoods Tower downtown.
Fahnestock also discovered that the prints and negatives were developed at Ritz One Hour Photo, located on the first floor of the City Center, adjacent to the Multifoods Tower.
A Ritz employee recalled a young couple that stopped in with an Olympus IS 10 the Saturday following commencement.
“They said they were borrowing it from a friend for the weekend, and they wanted me to show them how to load and unload the film,” said the employee. He said that the camera, valued at over $500, is a one-of-a-kind.
Fahnestock had not completed the 24-exposure roll; the thief did, and cut off the remaining exposures before sending them.
David Steinhauser, director of administration at Meagher and Geer, said he is aware of the situation but declined to comment on possible involvement by any of the firm’s employees. Steinhauser also said it is unlikely that anyone outside of the law firm could have used the postal meter.
“I just want my camera back,” Fahnestock said. “Whoever took it had enough of a conscience to (send the pictures). Hopefully, they will return the camera.”
The weeks surrounding finals and commencement saw a number of other incidents:

ù A recent University graduate caused a minor scare when he got a small amount of radioactive material on his hands Monday in a health-sciences lab.
The student handled a tipetter contaminated with phosphorus 32, not knowing that the small lab tube had not been properly labeled as radioactive.
The accident, which took place on the 13th floor of the Mayo Building, was not serious and posed no health threat. Another lab worker detected the radiation, and because University Radiation Safety was unavailable at the time, the workers called 911. Dispatchers sent fire trucks and the building was evacuated.
The student was decontaminated by Radiation Safety and the building was carefully surveyed, but no spill was detected.
“The radioactive material was in the wrong place and should have been marked,” said Dr. Richard Hanson, a professor of microbiology. “That was an error on the part of our laboratory.”

ù A man jumped 25 feet from a balcony in an attempt to get into a dance for free. The dance was being held June 6 at Coffman Memorial Union.
Quincy McHenry, 25, suffered an angulated fracture of his left foot, possible knee and spine injuries and a forehead laceration in the jump.

ù University police responded to a call at the Law Library when a female student refused to leave the building, which closes at 4:30 p.m.
The student was studying at 6:30 p.m. in the library on June 9 when officers approached her and asked her to leave. She provided the officers with identification, but became angry while they checked her background and tried to push her way past the officers in an effort to leave the scene. When officers informed her that she would be released when her IDs had cleared, she kicked one of the officers in the leg. She was pushed to the ground, handcuffed, cited for assault and released.
The student claims that in the past, guards had allowed her to study after hours in the library, and that she was unaware that University police had been called to the scene.
“I was just trying to do what they wanted me to do — leave. I grabbed my stuff and got up to walk out when the officer got in front of me,” said the student. “I had been working all day and was sort of ornery and obstinate. When I tried to push past the officer, I sort of kicked her.”

ù A man was observed at 417 Walnut St. attempting to open car doors, peering into groundfloor windows and rummaging through garbage. University Police responded to the complaint on June 16 at 2:30 in the morning. The man was issued a trespass warning and released.