- Associated Press - Tuesday, July 28, 2015

July 28—If you’ve noticed the DVD selection at the Centre County Library at 200 N. Allegheny St. seems a little thinner than before, your eyes aren’t deceiving you.

A rash of DVD thefts in June left the library about three dozen discs lighter, branch manager Jennifer Freed said. A majority of the movies stolen were in the action and horror genres.

The movies were at least 5 years old, she said, and were displayed in the library. Newer DVDs are typically held behind the counter.

“What these people were doing were taking the cases, walking back through the nonfiction area and taking the DVDs from the cases,” she said. “They were leaving the cases back by the books. That’s how we found out this was happening.”

The film thieves got away with 32 discs over the course of two weeks, she said. As a result, all DVDs have been moved behind the counter.

“We apologize for the inconvenience,” Freed said. “It takes longer for people to check out now, but it’s what we had to do.”

Since the thefts were not captured on a security system, she said, library staff didn’t reach out to police. The culprit remains unknown.

For now, Freed said, the library is accepting both monetary and DVD donations to make up for the losses. Additional sleeves had to be purchased to store the formerly shelved DVDs securely, and the library also is seeking to purchase locking DVD cases for future display.

A list of the stolen films is available at the library if anyone has a copy he or she would be willing to donate, she said. Monetary donations can be taken at the library, over the phone or through the library’s website at centrecountylibrary.org.

“We just want people to be made aware that they’re stealing from your library,” Freed said.

Jeremy Hartley writes a column about news in the Bellefonte area. He can be reached at 231-4616 or [email protected] Follow him on Twitter @JJHartleyNews.

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(c)2015 the Centre Daily Times (State College, Pa.)

Visit the Centre Daily Times (State College, Pa.) at www.centredaily.com

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