Thirteen Apple desktop computers used by student journalists were stolen from offices earlier this week in the lower level of the O’Shaughnessy-Frey Library Center on the St. Paul campus of the University of St. Thomas.
The computers were taken from office space used by TommieMedia and the ThreeSixty Journalism program sometime between 5:45 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 8, and 9:30 a.m. Thursday, Jan. 9.
Mostly likely, according to this St. Thomas Public Safety Alert, the computers were taken at around 10 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 8.
ThreeSixty is the College of Arts and Sciences journalism program for minority and low-income teens. TommieMedia is the St. Thomas student-run online news organization.
According to the Public Safety Alert, there are no suspects and no signs of forced entry to either of the two office suites.
The 13 computers were leased by the university.
Lynda McDonnell, ThreeSixty Journalism’s executive director, said all five of the computers used by students and staff were taken. The computer that was in her locked office was not taken, however.
“This is sad and infuriating,” she said. “We lost a lot of documents and templates on those computers that we will have to create again. It will take a lot of time.”
Caroline Rode, assignment editor for TommieMedia, said that while they lost eight computers, the four most-critical computers were left behind.
The four not taken contained important TommieMedia files that included photos, templates, archives and videos.
“The stolen computers were important to us, of course, but the loss of the four that were left behind would have been more serious,” she said. “And it’s a real shame for the ThreeSixty program. We see those students working on the computers all the time. I hope this can be resolved soon.”
Anyone with information about the crime is asked to call Public Safety at (651) 962-5100. Information can be reported confidentially or anonymously by sending an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling (651) 96(2-TIPS).