Three members of the University of Utah’s men’s basketball coaching staff, head coach Larry Krystkowiak and two team managers, Hans Steinbrenner and Austin DeSilvia, were awarded Public Service medals by campus chief of police, Scott Folsom on November 26th. In both cases, the individuals involved noticed something off and decided to do something about it. “Many people walk around somewhat oblivious to what is going on around them,” Chief Folsom said after presenting the medals. “These men noticed suspicious activities, took action and made the call. We can all play a role in making our campus safer.”
Early on September 28, 2013, Coach Krystkowiak arrived to the Huntsman Center for practice. He noticed a man riding a bicycle while wheeling another bike along with him as he rode. Realizing that something was suspicious, Coach Krystkowiak approached the man and yelled for him to stop. After questioning him briefly, Coach Krystkowiak suspected the man was up to something and that the bikes were stolen. Krystkowiak ordered the man to sit down on the sidewalk while he called police. He told the suspect that if he tried to run, he was going to chase him and tackle him. The suspect stayed put until campus police arrived.
After investigating, the University Police took the suspect into custody. He had stolen the second bicycle he was wheeling with him, and was also in possession of other stolen property and burglary tools. Without the quick actions taken by Coach Krystkowiak, the suspect would likely not have been apprehended.
Just a few days later, on October 1, a photo of a suspect believed to be involved with thefts from the Huntsman Center was circulated to members of the Athletics department. Two managers from the Men’s basketball team, Hans Steinbrenner and Austin DeSilvia, took it upon themselves to go out and look for the suspect on campus. They searched areas around the Huntsman Center and Football Complex without any success. Steinbrenner and DeSilvia were just about to give up when they spotted the suspect carrying two backpacks near the Huntsman Center. They parked their vehicle and followed the suspect on foot while calling University Police from a distance. The suspect entered the HPER complex and Steinbrenner and DeSilvia followed him inside and into a faculty locker room in the North HPER Building. The suspect was attempting to stash the backpacks and other items when Steinbrenner and DeSilvia confronted him about his actions. The suspect became agitated and tried to leave, but both managers prevented him from doing so until police arrived. After investigating, officers found the suspect in possession of numerous stolen items from the Athletics department, and took him into custody.
Please remember, if you see something odd, call campus police at 801-585-2677. The campus community is also encouraged to use the Tip-A-Cop email. If you are calling to report a fire, stop a crime, or save a life, call 911.