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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

Phi Psi found not responsible for theft of newspapers

Phi Psi found not responsible for theft of newspapers

The Greek Standards Board has found the Phi Kappa Psi fraternity not responsible for the theft of 10,000 Daily Wildcat newspapers on Oct. 8, according to the board’s official final report released Friday afternoon.

In its final report, the Greek Standards Board outlined several reasons for its decision.

Information that worked against the Daily Wildcat during judicial deliberations included incidents surrounding the Spanish homework found among a pile of thousands of the stolen newspapers on West Anklam Road on Oct. 9.

Given that Daily Wildcat employees found the stolen newspapers, the board decided the evidence did not show the fraternity was responsible for the theft.

Instead of in an official court of law where the defendant must be proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, Daily Wildcat representatives were only charged with the task of showing that the fraternity was, more likely than not, responsible for the theft, according to official Greek Standards Board procedures.

The final report also cites Phi Kappa Psi’s police report issued to the University of Arizona Police Department on Oct. 9, where the fraternity claims that “”Phi Kappa Psi members saw individuals going through their trash can.””

Although the fraternity said the incident occurred on the night of Oct. 8 or the morning of Oct. 9, police records show that Phi Kappa Psi members did not call the police until 3:46 p.m., well after the Daily Wildcat reported finding the homework of Phi Kappa Psi members Alex Cornell and Nick Kovaleski at the scene of the stolen newspapers.

The Greek Standards Board hearing testimony of advertising manager Mike Spohn was also questioned in the board’s final report.

Spohn testified that he saw three individuals loading Daily Wildcat newspapers into a tan Toyota Camry on Oct. 8 around 8 a.m.

The board’s final report noted that the vehicle associated with the theft was never officially linked to Phi Kappa Psi and that the three men were not identified as belonging to the fraternity.

Also noted in the report was that “”only three men were ever seen taking copies of the Daily Wildcat,”” a finding proven false by witnesses who saw other individuals in a black car stealing newspapers on the morning of Oct. 8, information Daily Wildcat representatives expressed to the Greek Standards Board at the hearing Wednesday.

The board also stated as a reason for its ruling that “”the Daily Wildcat stated that Phi Kappa Psi fraternity never denied involvement in the issue”” while presenting in the final report that the fraternity did deny involvement in an interview with Fraternity and Sorority Programs on Oct. 8 and also denied involvement in a letter sent to the Greek Standards Board prior to the hearing.

Daily Wildcat representatives never claimed Phi Kappa Psi leadership refused to deny involvement altogether, but rather that they had never denied involvement to the Daily Wildcat, according to written transcripts of the hearing that featured both Phi Kappa Psi and Daily Wildcat leadership.

The board found the two e-mails entered into evidence as showing Phi Kappa Psi responsible for the theft as unreliable, finding that in one case, the sender’s “”account could not be considered without the ability to question her in person,”” the final report said.

The other e-mail sender, mathematics freshman Brennan Vincent, submitted a letter to the Greek Standards Board stating that his intentions regarding his e-mail message had been misconstrued, according to the report.

“”He wrote in his letter that he had implicated Phi Kappa Psi in his letter only because he didn’t believe the Daily Wildcat would print a letter where he solely stated that the reporting of the Daily Wildcat was irresponsible,”” the report said.

With the case being closed by UAPD and the Greek Standards Board, the on-campus judicial aspects of the case have been exhausted. The Dean of Students Office has begun investigating Cornell and Kovaleski individually, but has no authority to discipline Phi Kappa Psi as a whole.

The Dean of Students Office contacted the Daily Wildcat on Nov. 6 to ask managing editor Shain Bergan to testify in the case against Cornell and Kovaleski.

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