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Prank calls reported from Grossmann

Prank Calls Graphic
Waverly Police have reported at least seven prank 911 calls from the public phones in Grossmann Hall. The callers have not yet been identified and the case remains open. — Brett Schwickerath/TRUMPET

Waverly Police have received at least seven prank 911 calls from the public phones in Grossmann Hall in the last three months.

The police and Wartburg security personnel both responded to each phone call, and searched the entire building.

Most of the calls originated from the first floor on the south side. However, no students have come forward with ties or information on this issue.

“It’s juvenile, it’s petty, it’s illegal,” John Meyers, director of campus security and safety, said. “The police take their time to respond and they’re going on good faith that somebody is genuinely in trouble.”

Meyers said each time a prank call was made, at least two police officers responded.

Waverly Police Chief Richard Pursell said one of the calls took an officer away from a fire alarm call.

“Pranks are intended to be just for fun, but a little more forethought should be used when it comes to 911 calls since officers could be pulled from a real emergency situation,” Pursell said.

Consequences for pranks like this consist of a simple misdemeanor charge and a maximum fine of $100 or 30 days in jail.

Residents in Grossmann and Löhe have been asked to keep a look out for the callers.

Campus security personnel have also reported vandalism of the public phones, including breaking and stealing the phone.Security personnel are now discussing the removal of the phones.

Meyers said he asked Residence Life to create a poll for students in Löhe and Grossmann to see how many student utilize the public phones.

Meyers said there was a similar problem around five years ago, when students had landline phones in their rooms. Eventually, those phones were removed.

Meyers is hoping these incidences top, and encourages students to avoid criminal activity.

“You don’t want to graduate with a bachelor’s degree and a criminal record,” he said.

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