In the wake of winning the Monon Bell, three intentional fires were set on DePauw University’s campus over the weekend.
The first fire was a couch that was set ablaze in the front lawn of Alpha Tau Omega Fraternity. The second fire was a picnic table which was ignited in South Quad with some type of accelerant, which public safety has not been able to identify.
The third was a couch which was brought in front of the Boulder and East College and set alight at around 4 a.m. “This is within feet of our flagship building of our institution, over 175 years old, and it could have went up in flames,” said Angie Nally, director of Public Safety.
Public Safety was disappointed that they had to call the Greencastle fire department so frequently Saturday night. “The fire department was excited to be a part of DePauw’s win, and came out and drove their fire truck with their lights and sirens on with our football team and then we repaid them with three pull station alarms and three intentionally set fires,” Nally said. “They made at least eight runs to DePauw that night, which is really not good, not to mention the health and safety aspects of having an intentionally set fire.”
Investigations are being held to figure out who is responsible for the fires. “We have spent some time reviewing videos and talking with some folks, and we will do our best to get those folks to a place where they are held accountable for that,” Nally said. “We will identify who those people are who are responsible, and we will hold them accountable.”
Public Safety plans on charging the people responsible with destruction of property, and will most likely send them to be reviewed by community standards. In addition, the people responsible might be charged by the prosecutor as well.
According to Public Safety, the fire set near the Bolder and East College was the worst of the fires. “It was something that was really reckless and irresponsible,” Nally said. “Our brand new sidewalks that were laid this summer were damaged to the point where they will have to be replaced.”
Students across campus are not pleased with the fires. “I understand why they did it, but I don’t think it’s okay,” said sophomore, Coco Bernard.
Other students can understand how it all happened more easily. “I mean it was a big game and sometimes people don’t know how to react,” said Ashaun Miller, a sophomore football player. “People sometimes set things on fire to show enjoyment.”