Case of the missing cameras gone cold

By Zayn Roohi

Sun Star Photo Editor

After a process that seemed almost like a scene out of Mission Impossible, the mysterious safe was finally opened, revealing almost nothing.


Manager of Action Security, Anthony Smith, demonstrates the proper technique for lining up the three combination wheels, a technique that can be used to crack into safes. Zayn Roohi/Sun Star

UAF journalism student Jeff Bushke responded to the Sun Star’s call for a safecracker early last week. He took the safe to local Fairbanks company Action Security, who used a high tech device to crack the safe.

According to Action Security locksmith Justin Vogt, the actual process of opening the safe could not be described due to security reasons,  but it involved a “safe dialer and manipulation.”

The safe took 18 hours to crack, according to Action Security Manger Anthony Smith.

The safe wasn’t opened until Oct. 20, so a News Miner journalist and the Sun Star staff could attend.

In the moments leading up to the opening, Smith gave a short speech detailing the security measures of the safe.


Sun Star faculty adviser Lynne Lott prepares to open the safe, only to be disappointed moments later by a nearly empty safe. She wasn’t the only disappointed person present. Zayn Roohi/Sun Star

He concluded his speech by saying that if no one has the combo to a safe, there’s generally nothing inside. Only twice has he found things in locked safes.

He was proved right moments later when Sun Star faculty adviser Lynne Snifka opened the safe. It contained only one single item, which was unfortunately not a clue as to where all the cameras went.

The safe contained a magnifying loupe, which is a tool used in the development of film. Most likely this was a relic from the Sun Star’s film era.

This leaves the Sun Star in a delicate position, as unless most of our equipment is hidden in the depths of the Wood Center, the camera thieves have a very large head start.

A police report is being filed.


The disappointingly empty inside of the mysterious safe. If any students have relevant information on the location of the Sun Star’s cameras, they should come talk to the Sun Star staff. Another Turtle Club gift card lies waiting. Zayn Roohi/Sun Star

At this point, the only definitive facts that remain are that the equipment was in the Sun Star’s possession as of April 30, 2013, and that we are missing a lot of ridiculously expensive equipment.

No one knows if we’ll be able to find this equipment. However, if any former Sun Star staff or students have any information, we invite them to come and talk to us.

Journalism student Bushke will still go home with a $100 Turtle Club gift card. Another gift card is offered for anyone giving information leading to the recovery of the equipment and/or the arrest of the thieves.

For now, I’ll be rewriting my grant proposal for new cameras. We definitely need them.



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