CMU student charged with arson after items were found burned out - ABC 12 – WJRT – Flint, MI

CMU student charged with arson after items were found burned outside a residence hall

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MOUNT PLEASANT (WJRT) - (05/01/14) - It's a dangerous tradition. Central Michigan University students have been celebrating the end of the year by torching couches, chairs and other items.

Now police, the city, and university are cracking down.

A 19-year-old CMU student is charged with fifth degree arson after items were found burned outside of Thorpe Hall Wednesday.
Police hope his arrest serves as a reminder that this isn't something they're taking lightly.
CMU police have been spending the past few days trying to address the issue of arson.
They say a chair that belonged to the University, as well as other small household items, were found burned outside of Thorpe Hall this week.

"I don't get why you'd want to do that and then they also just leave the remnants of it just sitting out there for weeks, disrespectful," said CMU senior Crystal Miller.

Although this is the only incident that has been reported recently on campus, it's become a concern across the city.
It started last weekend.
CMU senior Crystal Miller who lives close to campus describes what she saw.
"I walked down out of my apartment and just in the middle of my apartment complex is a couch on fire just right underneath trees in the middle of all of the buildings," she said.

As a result of this, an emergency city-wide ordinance has been issued. It steps up penalties for anyone caught burning things.
CMU is working very closely with city police to monitor this type of activity.

"This year we've launched an educational campaign to encourage our students to walk away from anything illegal, we have a zero tolerance policy in our police department along with other agencies in the area will be out full force this weekend with  no tolerance, they will be arresting anybody that they see doing anything illegal," said Steve Smith, a spokesperson for the university.

Smith says last year, seven students were expelled from the university because of incidents like this.
The name of the CMU student arrested isn't being released until he faces a judge.
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