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Weekend Burglary Hits Hilles Library

$800 Stolen From Library Offices

By Amy R. Gutman

Eight hundred dollars was stolen from the safe and the coin machine at Hilles Library sometime over the Thanksgiving weekend, Saul L. Chafin, chief of University Police, said yesterday.

An employee of Hilles discovered the burglary Sunday afternoon. Approximately $500 was taken from the safe and about $300 was taken from the change machine.

Chafin said there was no sign of forced entry into the library or into either of the rooms where the coin machine and safe are located. "The building was under lock and key," he said.

The coin machine was opened with a key found in the safe, Chafin said.

Open Mind

"We suspect someone familiar with the building might be responsible for the burglary," Chafin said, adding that he was making no further assumptions. "I have to be broad minded," he said.

Heather E. Coles, librarian at Hilles and Lamont libraries, said the library routinely keeps large amounts of money in the safe and in the coin machine.

"The coin machine is used heavily and needs to be filled at least two times a week; we can't send a staff member tearing out to get change," she added.

Library officials have not decided what specific steps they will take to prevent further thefts, Coles said, adding, however, they have decided to buy a new safe.

Coles said the services the library offers--such as keeping a copying machine and a change machine--make it necessary for the library to have large amounts of cash. "That's what we're going to have to reassess," she added.

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