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About 2,400 copies of N.J. student paper stolen
Editors suspect article on drug bust prompted theft
February 19, 2008

NEW JERSEY -- Drew University officials are investigating the theft of about 2,400 copies of the Feb. 1 edition of the student newspaper.

University officials have no witnesses to the theft but are talking to people on campus, Director of Public Safety Tom Evans said.

"We've checked out all leads and have nothing new at the moment," Evans said.

Staffers at the weekly student paper, The Acorn, believe the theft is related to an article reporting on a campus drug bust in December, Editor in Chief Jackie Ryan said. The article also listed the drugs police found in the dorm room.

"We just report the news," Ryan said. "If we have that information, we owe it to the students to give it to them."

On Feb. 2, stacks of papers were found in the trash behind some student residences, she said. About 300 papers were left to distribute after the theft. Someone anonymously returned a cardboard box with about 350 copies of the stolen papers to the Acorn staff. The paper also reprinted 1,500 copies and distributed them on Feb. 5, Ryan said.

The article and a photograph of the student who was arrested are posted on the Acorn Web site. Staffers decided to remove reporter Anna Sohn's byline from the online version after some students harassed Sohn verbally and on Facebook, Ryan said.

The theft resulted in a loss of about $960 in printing fees, Ryan said.

This is the third time copies of the Acorn have been stolen in recent years. The previous two thefts were of an issue containing an article dealing with drug use on campus and an April Fool's issue, she said.

By Emilie Yam, SPLC staff writer

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