Southern student arrested, charged in theft

Amye Buckley

A Missouri Southern student has been charged with four counts of second-degree burglary and four counts of theft in connection with $20,000 of audiovisual equipment that went missing in February.

Seven classroom projectors, speakers and sound equipment disappeared from buildings around campus during incidents on Feb. 20, 21 and 25 Another incident was documented after the recovery of the stolen property.

Police discovered the missing equipment in the possession of William “Barry” Arwood, sophomore music major. Ken Kennedy, director of the department of public safety, worked with the Joplin Police Department to find the missing items.

Kennedy said items were in storage, and some were packaged to be shipped but all were recovered.

“Mr. Arwood was very cooperative with us after we located him, and helped us locate all the property,” Kennedy said.

Charges were filed against Arwood and a warrant was served March 7. He has pleaded not guilty in the case.

As far as Missouri Southern is concerned, the case is essentially closed.

“We’re just the victim here,” Kennedy said.

The items disappeared in a one-week time period ending with their Feb. 29 recovery. Kuhn Hall reported two projectors as missing during the early hours of Feb. 20. Plaster Hall reported two projectors and two subwoofers missing from the first floor on the morning of Feb 22. The locks had been cut and the items taken sometime during the night.

On the afternoon of Feb. 25 three projectors were taken from Leggett & Platt during the 1 p.m. hour. Security reports note a vehicle ticketed at during the same time parked by the exit closest to that room. A pair of speakers and piece of sound equipment were returned to Reynolds Hall before they were missed. All missing items were recovered by Joplin Police Department as part of the investigation, then returned to their Southern classrooms.

A hearing for the case is set for April 3.