A local man was arrested on Tuesday afternoon for piggybacking into Cabot House and stealing cash, an iPod and a Harvard ID card before Cabot residents notified the Harvard University Police Department (HUPD).
Twenty-three-year-old Cambridge resident Joshua L. Sperling was charged with one count of larceny and one count of breaking and entering during the daytime, which is a felony.
Amanda M. Dye ’07, who called HUPD to report the suspicious activity, said that Sperling gained entrance into the building by pretending that he was a student.
“When I got to the door [of Cabot], I had my ID in my hand, and there was a guy next to me who looked like he was getting his ID out,” she said. “When he saw me using mine, he was like, ‘Oh you have yours.’ I didn’t think anything of it.”
According to Dye, Sperling then headed to the second floor, while she headed to her room on the fourth floor. Several minutes later, she walked out of her room, and found Sperling wandering around the fourth floor.
“He was on our floor, randomly walking around, and didn’t look like he should be there, so I called the cops,” she said.
According to reports sent over a HUPD radio channel, when Sperling—described as a white male with dreadlocks—was apprehended, he repeatedly provided the wrong information. He first gave a social security number that came back to a woman, and then gave a number that would have identified him as a man named Frank, before providing his actual information.
Sperling allegedly walked around Cabot looking for rooms that had been left unlocked. Peter C. Mulcahy ’07, who is also a Crimson editor, said that Sperling entered his room and stole his iPod during the 15 to 20 minutes that he left his room unlocked in order to do laundry.
Kamila M. Lis ’05 said Sperling stole cash and her Harvard ID while she was inside her room. Both were in her wallet —which was attached to her keys, which she said she had left in her door.