Police Beat


The University Record, January 14, 1997


By Rebecca A. Doyle

Woman charged
with retail fraud

A woman not affiliated with the University waived a preliminary hearing scheduled for Jan. 8 and was bound over to Washtenaw County Circuit Court. She is charged on two counts of non-sufficient funds for five checks that she wrote at the Michigan Union Bookstore.

Student charged
with theft of microscope

An undergraduate student at the University was arrested Dec. 10 and charged with theft of a microscope that Department of Public Safety (DPS) officers found in his room during an investigation involving other felony charges. The microscope, worth about $1,200, had been missing since October from the Natural Science Building.

Fire damages residence
at Northwood V

A fire that DPS officers originally thought might be arson left in its wake structural damage in excess of $100,000. During the investigation of the Northwood V residence, officers found materials that had been carelessly stored near a hot water heater in the basement of the building were responsible for the blaze, and they ruled the cause accidental. Officers say that support beams and the floor of the structure will need to be replaced.

Beware of letters
from Nigeria soliciting funds

Capt. James Smiley of the Department of Public Safety urges members of the University community to be on the lookout for letters postmarked from Nigeria requesting individual bank account information. Last spring, letters addressed to individual University faculty, staff and students promised a sizable return on investment in Nigerian oil. Recipients of the letters were urged to send their personal bank account numbers in order to reap the benefits of oil held in reserve during the Persian Gulf War.

Smiley cautions members of the University community never to give out account information, since that and identification can be used to further a number of fraudulent activities and could result in substantial financial loss.

Although no losses have been reported to DPS, officers are working with the U.S. Secret Service to ascertain the origin of the letters, which have begun to appear again on campus. Smiley urges anyone who receives such a letter to contact DPS at 763-3434.


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