By Shivan Micoo
Two months after one of the biggest thefts in recent Ryerson history, school officials are beefing up security.
However, the culprit who stole $19,500 worth of camera equipment from the Image Arts building on Nov. 2 hasn’t been caught.
“We are looking at using cameras, motion sensors and at having more security patrolling the building,” said Don Snyder, chair of the School of Image Arts.
The locks on room 215 — the second-floor lab the equipment was taken from — have been changed, and the department has shifted to using traditional keys, Snyder said.
Before the theft occurred, staff and graduate students accessed the labs with key cards, similar to Ryerson One cards. Snyder also said metal plates have been placed near the lab’s doorknobs, preventing anyone from prying the door open.
The plates will also protect the internal locking mechanism from intrusion, he said. The second floor of the Image Arts building is currently under renovation.
A new studio is being built to compensate for space that will be lost when a new photo gallery and research centre is built. Snyder said additional safety precautions have been incorporated into renovation requests.
“Security made several recommendations, and the department has taken some preventative measures,” said Ryerson security manager Lawrence Robinson. Ali Kennedy, a fourth-year photography student, said she is glad to hear of the higher surveillance.
“It’s always really bad here,” Kennedy said. “You’ve got to look out for your own stuff.” The building is open until 10 p.m. on weekdays for students, but she said the late hours can sometimes be worrisome.
“There’s always staff and technicians here at night, but sometimes you see people in the building and you can just tell that they aren’t part of the program,” she said.
There hasn’t been any arrest, Robinson said. Early reports said the theft was possibly an inside-job, but no new evidence substantializes the claim.
Robinson said it is unlikely that any of the stolen property will be recovered, but he doesn’t think the investigation is a write-off.
“Typically in cases like these, the person involved gets caught 10 or so thefts down the road, and you clean up,” Robinson said.