Two Georgia Tech students were found guilty of abducting the ‘T’ from Virginia Tech’s Lane Stadium sign, according to the result of a Georgia Tech Police Department (GTPD) investigation that concluded earlier this week.
In addition, a recent unrelated T-theft occurred on the Atlantic Center Plaza sign in Midtown, where three T’s were removed, as well as a C. No investigation is currently underway, but, according to Media Relations Specialist Matt Nagel, if a case were to open, Atlanta Police would be heading it.
“These actions are an embarrassment to me personally and to Georgia Tech and do not reflect the behavior of a world-class institution of the caliber of Georgia Tech,” said Institute President G.P. “Bud” Peterson. “I have personally apologized to Virginia Tech President Steger, and hope that those involved realize how much this damages the reputation of the Institute, our students and alumni.”
The crime at Virginia Tech occurred at approximately 3 a.m. on Sept. 3, the day of the football game against Virginia Tech. The two Georgia Tech students and a Virginia Tech student, with whom the two were staying, removed the T from the sign using a crowbar, leaving a naked ‘S adium’ in place.
Upon removal of the letter, one student transported the ‘T’ to his off-campus residence near Georgia Tech, where he stored the T. After reading about various media releases regarding the issue and being advised by various people to turn in the T, this student gave in and asked two other people to return the T at the back of the Alumni House.
Last year, the Student Government Association, in conjunction with the administration, ran a “Keep the T in Tech” campaign to discourage stealing of T’s on campus following a slew of T thefts.
“The message from ‘Keep the T in Tech’ does not seem to be lost, as noticeable thefts of T’s on campus seems to have decreased dramatically,” said Graduate Student Body President Michael Kirka. “A possible weak-link in the campaign last year was that nothing was specifically said about respecting the property of our neighbors and hosts; although this should have been implied.”
Speaker of the Undergraduate House of Representatives Mike Mosgrove offered another explanation for the T-thefts possible reasons that these crimes have occurred this year.
“I believe the cause is the fact that students have realized defaming their own campus is silly, but they still want the tradition to ‘live on’,” Mosgrove said. “People need to see that stealing T’s outside of the context of the original tradition is silly across the board.”