Heist in Student Recreation and Wellness Center raises questions of security


Izzie Taveras


Freshman Jake Grigsby returned to his locker in the new Recreation and Wellness Center to find out that $30 had been taken from his wallet.

Grigsby had arrived at the gym around 8:30 p.m. on March 24 and placed his sweater and wallet in a locker before his workout.

After about two hours of working out, Grigsby had returned to his locker and found it unlocked although the combination had not been entered.

Grigsby found his sweater and wallet were still in the locker but the money in his wallet was missing.

There is no knowledge of who took the money or how, sincet here are no cameras in the locker room. Because the locker was unlocked without the correct combination dialed in, Grigsby


believes it is most probable that the locker was unlocked with a key.

Grigsby contacted Dr. Barry Miller, director of the Student Fitness Center, to report the incident. Miller had informed Grigsby that he must file a report with Radford University’s Police Department.

“He (Miller) was very understanding,” states Grigsby.

When Grigsby filed the police report, he was informed that he would most likely be out of $30.

Sgt. C. C. Fields stated that RUPD “receives about 50 cases of petty theft a week.”

Grigsby contacted Miller once again on March 30 inquiring about any new information regarding his incident. Grigsby had received no information from either RUPD or Miller.

“I’m not mad and I don’t expect to get my $30 back. I just hope that this sets a precedent for future rules. If there are 50 cases of theft a week, that should be cracked down on,” states Grigsby.

The Recreation and Wellness Center offers both cubbies and lockers that the students can use to store their belongings while they use the facilities. Many students have either forgotten their combinations or simply been unable to unlock their lockers and must ask one of the workers to unlock it for them. The problem with this is that students who ask for their lockers to be unlocked are seldom asked for proof to determine whether the belongings in the lockers are truly theirs.

Nicole Collantes, a sophomore at Radford University, states that once after being at the gym she had forgotten her locker combination and asked one of the workers to open the locker for her.

“I wasn’t asked what was in the locker, or anything to prove that it was mine. She just opened the locker and left,” said Collantes.

After Grigsby’s incident, the Recreation and Wellness Center has implemented a new system regarding the lockers. If a student is locked out of their locker, they must report it to the front desk and sign into a log in book. After they have logged in, a worker will ask for their student ID and unlock the locker for them.

Since Grigsby has returned to the gym he has noted the new login system in place for those who need their lockers unlocked. He is also a lot more cautious and brings with him only his Radford ID and uses the cubbies that are monitored by a camera.

















Miller believes that Grigsby’s situation is an isolated incident, as very few incidents of theft have been reported from the Recreation and Wellness Center. He believes that because many students have trouble using the lockers correctly, it is possible that Grigsby’s locker was never truly locked.

“There has been a learning curve for many students of how to use the lockers correctly. We have signs up with step by step procedures but unfortunately there have been quite a few students that need assistance with these new lockers,” said Miller.

Kim Aspelmeier, the assistant director of the Recreation and Wellness Center, stated that there are about 370 items in the Recreation and Wellness Center’s lost and found. Most of the items in the lost and found are items cleaned out of the lockers every night because students have forgotten to retrieve their stuff.

Aspelmeier also mentioned a case in which a student had stated that her belongings were stolen from a locker. When asked if she was sure that she was checking the correct locker she was very insistent that it was. After RUPD was contacted and arrived on the scene, it was discovered that she had been checking the wrong locker.

Although there has not been any new information from the Wellness and Recreation Center or RUPD regarding Grigsby’s incident, the Wellness and Recreation Center will continue to apply additional security measures in order to avoid incidents similar to Grigsby’s.