Stolen laptop recovered

By By Ana Breton

By Ana Breton

A laptop containing more than 40 years of research was recovered last Monday in the same place it was allegedly taken from days before.

James Mayfield, professor emeritus at the U, left the table he was working at to look for research material in the Middle East section of the Marriott Library. When he returned, his laptop, which he estimated to contain $50,000 worth of research, was stolen.

A custodian in the library found the laptop last Monday stashed under a pile of boxes a few feet away from where Mayfield was working.

There was no damage done to the computer, which contained 2,000 pages’ worth of notes Mayfield was transcribing for a book he is planning to publish later this year.

Becca Griffen, head of protection services, said a suspect has not been found, but that she has clues as to why the laptop was found in the same location.

“It was obviously stashed,” Griffen said. “I think the person who took it was planning to come back and get it.”

Mayfield, who taught political science and Middle East studies, had been working on his transcript 12 hours a day, five days a week since April. His research focused on the political and social changes in Egypt, a project he conducted by surveying more than 2,500 people in 50 Egyptian villages.

Mayfield was unavailable for comment.

Griffen encourages students to use laptops in highly populated areas to prevent them from being stolen.

“Just never leave your laptop out of sight,” she said. “Even if you jump up to use the bathroom.”