Men charged for stealing, vandalizing Menorah

Local News

State College Police have charged suspects who stole a Menorah from the Zeta Beta Tau fraternity earlier this month.

Police said those suspects were either brothers or visitors from the Theta Delta Chi fraternity, stole a Menorah from the front lawn of the Zeta Beta Tau fraternity at about 2 a.m. on December 2. Investigators said they confessed to taking the Menorah, as well as several other acts of vandalism.

This theft was witnessed by a member of the victim fraternity who attempted to intervene in the theft.  This victim was punched in the face during the intervention. The suspects took the menorah into their own fraternity house. The president of the fraternity where the menorah was taken, arranged for the the return of the menorah to the original owners, prior to police involvement in the matter. The victim that witnessed the theft and was punched declined to press charges for the assault.

Despite the vandalism, members of Zeta Beta Tau said the incident showed just how supportive the Penn State Community can be.

“We’re getting great support by the community, by the university, the police have all been really really helpful,” said Adam Schwartz, president of Zeta Beta Tau.

The Menorah was returned to Zeta Beta Tau before police started investigating this case.

Police charged Thomas Callahan, 19, David Kovacs, 20, and John Hamlin IV, 19, with several crimes, including two misdemeanor counts of theft, receiving stolen property, and criminal mischief by tampering with property.

Liam Williams, and Zachery Paley are co-defendants and are currently not charged.

According to police, the president of Theta Delta Chi, said he saw the Menorah being stolen by his own brothers and asked them to return it. Police say it was eventually returned but was damaged.

Police report other damage was done to other items on house property that same night, which includes a broken window, and basketball hoop.

This was the second incident involving the fraternity’s Menorah in a couple days.

Two days before the previously reported vandalism occurred, the Menorah was found knocked over and damaged.

So far, no charges have been filed over that damage.

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