Residence don accused of stealing $20,000 worth of items from WCH, Little House

Waterloo College Hall residence. (File photo by Kate Turner)

Waterloo Regional Police Services (WRPS) have arrested 23-year-old Wilfrid Laurier University student and residence don Jeremiah Rojas in connection to a string of thefts at Waterloo College Hall (WCH) residence last year and Little House residence this year. According to the incident report, WRPS seized a large quantity of property valued at $20,000.

Electronics, laptops, phones and personal items were stolen from WCH during the 2012-13 holiday break. From Feb. 1 to 7, a number of break and enter incidents were reported from students at the Little House residence. Rojas was a don at Little House from Sept. 2013 until his arrest on Sunday and was a don at WCH last year, according to Kevin Crowley, acting assistant vice-president: communications at Laurier.

Rojas was initially arrested on Feb. 9 and was charged with two counts of break and enter, two counts of theft under $5,000 and possession of stolen property under $5,000. He was then arrested again on Feb. 13 for 39 counts of break and enter, 10 counts of mischief to data and five counts of thefts under $5,000. According to the report, Rojas used his master key to break into the rooms.

“As the investigation continued, investigators found property in a number of locations and they continued to look into his possible involvement. That in turn led to his arrest again and further charges being laid,” explained Olaf Heinzel, public affairs co-coordinator at WRPS.

Heinzel said that Rojas has been released with promise to not attend Wilfrid Laurier University. He is scheduled for a court appearance on March 28.

As for his floor at Little House, Crowley said that Residence Life is looking to filling the vacant spot with another don from a different residence, but there is  no confirmation yet. An e-mail was sent out to the residents of Little House earlier in the week to notify them of the situation and, with the recent charges for the WCH thefts from 2012-13, Laurier plans on getting in touch with those who lived in that residence too.

Crowley stated that the university is reviewing its hiring practices for dons as a result of this situation.

“It’s an unfortunate situation and university is reviewing its hiring practices. We have very good hiring practices, but again, things can always be reviewed,” said Crowley.


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