Texas A&M Cadets Suspected of Student Newspaper Theft

Student cadets have been accused of stealing thousands of copies of The Battalion at Texas A&M University “in an effort to keep an article published in Monday’s paper from being read.”

As the Battalion itself reported, members of the school’s Corps of Cadets were spotted early Monday morning in street clothes grabbing copies of the newspaper from at least one campus location.

The action was apparently in response to the top story in that day’s edition.  The story reported on the previous underage drinking charge of a student cadet currently campaigning to become one of the school’s prominent Yell Leaders (“students that leads Aggie fans in a series of ‘yells’ during athletic events . . . who are elected annually by popular vote of the student body”).

Interestingly, at least one of the cadet groups responsible for the mass swipe underwent an abrupt about-face, returning the stolen copies to their stands only hours later.  Cadets had known about the article prior to its publication and were under instructions from Corps student leaders to refrain from touching the papers.

The thievery has cost the Battalion more than $5,000 in make-goods to advertisers.  Newspaper staffers will be filing a complaint with the school and pursuing punishment for the offenders.

Battalion editor in chief Matt Woolbright, who also wrote the article angering some cadets: “There is an incredible amount of time and effort that goes into each copy of the Battalion.  From the photographers and writers to the editors and designers, so much is poured into our product. To see a day’s work, not to mention the time taken on assignment, go unnoticed and information remain unknown is just unfortunate.”

The current theft sadly follows a somewhat similar incident roughly one year ago at another school within the Texas A&M University system.  In March 2010, a majority of the players on the Texas A&M University-Commerce football team worked together to steal almost 2,000 copies of The East Texan student newspaper.  The issue of the paper that angered the squad featured a front-page story about the arrests of two players in a campus drug bust.

The most surprising part of that drama was its aftermath.  Guy Morriss, the university football coach, stated he was pleased with his players’ performance.  “I’m proud of my players for doing that,” he said.  “This was the best team building exercise we have ever done.”

One Response to “Texas A&M Cadets Suspected of Student Newspaper Theft”
  1. I feel your pain, guys.
    When a group on campus stole nearly all 10,000 copies of the Daily Wildcat about a year and a half ago it was hell setting things right.