Abby Christensen, news writer

Sara Jepsen was sitting at lunch on the first day of school and left to use the restroom. When she came back she began to wonder where she had set her phone down. She raced back to the table and saw that the phone was nowhere to be found.

“I was only gone a minute maybe, and then, gone,” Jepsen, junior, said.

According to Officer Chad Walton, there have been a total of eight reported thefts the first two weeks of school, seven being iPhones. In the first two days of school, five iPhones were stolen, while last year there was an average of two to five lost or stolen reports of electronics a week.

“The problem is that more and more kids have [iPhones], and they’re crimes of opportunity in the sense that they know what they want to steal now. [The thieves] want to steal iPhones,” said Mike Wade, senior class principal.

According to Wade, one reason behind the thefts is that the thieves know places that people will buy the stolen phones, clean them and sell them again.

If a thief is caught stealing, they could face consequences in and outside of school.  Walton says stealing anything over $500 is a felony, which means thieves could be arrested.

Theft is a level four offense, which means if it was the thief’s first offense they would face out of school suspension up to 10 days. Walton said that if a thief is found guilty of stealing multiple phones, they could end up in jail. Even if someone picked up an abandoned phone up off a table and kept it but didn’t technically steal it, they could still be charged with possession of stolen property.

According to Wade, the majority of the crimes have been caused by people leaving their phones out and students need to start treating KHS like a public place.

“Ask yourself a question: If I was at the mall with my friends, would I leave my $650 brand new iPhone 5 on a table and walk around for 10 or 15 minutes?”  Officer Chad Walton said.

Ainsley Eisenhart, junior, was a victim of this during the second week of school. Similar to Jepsen’s experience, Eisenhart was sitting at lunch with her friends and left her phone on the table while going through the lunch line.

“I came back, sat down and didn’t really notice it was gone and just kept on eating my lunch,” Eisenhart said. “As soon as I was about to leave I was like, ‘Oh my God, where’s my phone?’”

Eisenhart then proceeded to talk to Walton and file a theft report. Her iPhone has yet to be found.

KHS is doing everything they can to solve this. Wade said they have caught one thief, and that they were arrested and face criminal charges. The staff has also checked every locker to make sure it properly opens and locks, added more security cameras and is trying to educate the students more and more about this issue.

According to Walton, students need to learn more personal responsibility and help each other out by reporting thefts and turning in phones that are lying around.

“Don’t be afraid to turn things in and report things”  Walton said. “We really want the students to help each other and educate them. I’ll do as much as I can to help with that.”