Break-in to Porter House discovered Tuesday, residents notified with the rest of us

Earlier this week on Tuesday, the Middlebury College Department of Public Safety sent an email bearing the subject line “Crime Alert” to all students, faculty, and staff. It read:

On Tuesday, December 28, 2010, Public Safety discovered forced entries to Porter House and multiple rooms within the building.  Middlebury Police are investigating this incident.

Anyone with information regarding this crime, or who saw suspicious people or activity in the vicinity of Porter House during the December Recess, should contact the Department of Public Safety or the Middlebury Police.

Porter House, located on the driveway (Porter Field Road) to the Mahaney Center for the Arts parking lot. (Click photo to find it on the campus map.)

Current Porter House resident Moriel Rothman ’11 says that this email was the first time that he or any of his housemates were notified of the break-in.

The first contact we got was the all-campus email. Then we called, then they sent us a personalized email.”

So far, there is no word from Public Safety or Middlebury Police on whether or not there have been any suspects implicated in the break-in.

Further, residents have yet to find out whether their belongings left in their rooms and common spaces were stolen or damaged.

December recess staffers of the Public Safety phone lines told MiddBlog that we would have to wait until Monday to get an official statement regarding the College’s policy on compensation for stolen property. But, past experience and statements in the Department’s Safety and Security Handbook, such as “the College is not responsible for the loss of property” (page 38), would make it seem highly unlikely that residents will receive compensation for damages done to their belongings, whether doors and windows were locked properly or not.

In any case, this January’s return to campus for the residents of 37 Porter Field Road will be a grim one.

When asked if he had any additional comments, Rothman simply responded “Urgh.”

Email publicsafety@middlebury.edu or call 802.443.5911 if you have any information helpful to the burglary’s investigation.

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