Federal offense on campus

Any given day, students go to pick up their mail at their personal UVM mailbox with general ease.Sophomore Currie Broderick had a problem with the system though. In the beginningof the semester, he opened up a new checking account and requested that the boxes of checks be mailed to his UVMmailbox in the Jeanne-Mance dormitory. Broderick’s checks never arrived, and he soon found himself missing $200.According to Broderick, somewhere within the UVM mail system his checks werestolen and fraudulently written out for cash.”It’s pretty lame,” Broderick said. The perpetrator also reportedly crossed outJeanne-Mance as the address and replaced it with Waterman.Broderick has reported this incident to the police, and a formal investigation is underway.The mail is delivered to the front desks of each building by the United States PostalService, and it is then sorted by whomever is on duty at the front desk or the mail room.It is forbidden to give the mail directly to people, according to many mailroom workers. Instead, at the beginning ofthe year, students are assigned boxes in their dormitory that have a secure combination. All mail must be put into the boxes and retrieved by the students through their mailboxes.Mailroom workers also stated that they have never heard of any theft, and that checks are automatically taken from the bins and put into the student’s boxes to reduce theexposure time of checks.When the mailroom is empty, the doors are locked so that students cannot gainunlawful entry and access to other student’s mail. “If I had anything important, I really wouldn’t want it there,” Broderick said.Freshman Keith Zengel disagreed. “I feel that my mail is safe in the UVM system,” hesaid.”I think that it is pretty safe,” freshman Molly MacMillan said.Freshman Mike Rodgers pointed out another problem. “I don’t think I’ve had a problemwith it yet, but then again if someone steals my mail then I wouldn’t even know I was supposed to get it.”Students have noticed other problems within the UVM mail system.Problems include the back of mail boxes being opened. One student said that when heforgets his mail combination, he has had his friend reach into his box through his friend’s box right beside it.”The mail room staff I have dealt with seem to be trustworthy and capable,” Rodgers said.The UVM mail room staff also have a protocol that ensures some level of safeguard against theft of student’s mail, whether it is keeping the doors locked orsticking to the prescribed system.