Computers thieves strike Saunders Hall at UH Manoa

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Deep gouges around door knobs and in door jambs show how thieves broke into four offices in Saunders Hall at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. One of the rooms was Holly Sevier's space.

"The door was broken open. There was a huge hole in the door. Wood all over the place," she said.

Sevier shares the office with fellow graduate student lecturer Nick Gibson. He said the criminals targeted their computers.

"They went through all of the drawers in our desks which also kind of feels like a violation," he said. "But they didn't take things that were worth money that they could have. So it was a very specific kind of hit."

Six new iMac computers were stolen, two from one office and four from another. The computers are valued at $1,600 apiece.

Sevier and Gibson's iMacs stored student grades and student id numbers.

"We do keep information that's vital to us doing our jobs. That means that it is sensitive sometimes," Gibson said.

The break-in is the second computer theft in two months at UH Manoa. The crime comes on the heels of a report that shows campus burglaries went up in 2011. Offices in Saunders have locks but hallway access in the building is wide open around the clock.

Sevier wants more security.

"I would prefer that there were at least cameras in the hallways for my own personal safety and for the machines and equipment that we have here that we use," she said.

"As instructors we do a lot with the technology that we have available to us," Gibson said. "It's tough to know that we have to make things up again, and our students are going to suffer a little bit for it."

The burglary at Saunders happened early Thursday morning. Sevier will now have to recreate her lesson plans without the computer that held years worth of her work.

If you have any information regarding this incident or any other criminal incident at UH Mânoa, please call Campus Security at 956-6911 or the Honolulu Police Department at 911.

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