Drop that filing cabinet and put your hands in the air
A recent rash of thefts at Chico State University has left some of the school’s departments missing a variety of equipment. Among the items reported missing are a scan doubler, a VCR, a CD player, a receiver, a camera, a tape player, a filing cabinet, a transformer and several pieces of computer equipment.

John Thomas Gordon was arrested on Aug. 7 on the east side of Glenn Hall for allegedly taking computer equipment, but it is not known what else he may have stolen, if anything.

Kathryn Silliman, associate professor in nutrition and food science, had her computer hard drive and keyboard stolen from her office in Tehama Hall in late July.

“We worked Friday and came in Monday and it was gone,” Silliman said. “We don’t know who did it.”

“This really taught me that you need to back up your files frequently,” Silliman said.

Lt. Kelly Clark of the University Police Department said the recent thefts include “a couple of substantial losses” in which more than $2,000 worth of goods was lost at once.

“We’ve had quite a few [burglaries] this summer,” he said.

Probation Department study time frame extended—again
By the looks of things, the county’s examination of the Probation Department is getting more and more in-depth. Butte County Chief Administrative Officer John Blacklock acknowledged this week that the study—which was commissioned in June after a series of complaints about department head Helen Harberts—now has an “open-ended” finishing date.

The study was supposed to take only about six weeks when Blacklock announced it in mid-June, but it was extended in July when the outside agency assigned to perform the study started having trouble getting all the department’s employees interviewed.

Blacklock, who is retiring from the county on Sept. 19, said he doubts if the study will be finished before his last day.

“The onsite interviews and things are done, but now the county is in discussions with the courts as to what to do,” Blacklock said. “… There’s still a ways to go.”

Judge: Pi Kappa Phi fraternity can be sued for pledge’s death
A San Francisco judge ruled last week that Pi Kappa Phi fraternity’s claim that it no longer existed—and therefore couldn’t be held liable for the binge drinking death of a pledge—was bogus.

The fraternity’s South Carolina-based national organization made the claim, stating that the Chico chapter disbanded right after pledge Adrian Heideman died in the fraternity house basement after a party on Oct. 7. According to court documents, after Heideman drank an entire bottle of blackberry brandy and became overwhelmingly intoxicated that night, the fraternity members took him downstairs to sleep it off and then went back to the party. Heideman was found dead only a couple of hours later.

Heideman’s parents are suing the fraternity for wrongful death. The court’s ruling means that their suit will go forward.