The University of Richmond Police Department made its first arrest at 9 a.m. Tuesday for UR Busted, the university’s annual fundraiser for the Virginia Special Olympics.
Richmond faculty, staff and students were arrested on charges ranging from being a New York Jets fan to being recklessly pleasant. Those arrested were chosen by their peers who bought their arrest warrants for $10.
Officers handcuffed and placed participants in the back of a police car before they were taken to the Heilman Dining Center and placed before Natalia Green, director of parking services and UR Busted’s honorary judge.
Green gave participants funny but stern talks about their charges, senior Shannon Hedrick said. Hedrick works for parking services and volunteered to help run the event.
After Green set their bail — ranging from $100 to $250 — Hedrick took the participants’ mug shots in a mock jail cell before they sat down for complimentary lunches.
Participants then called and emailed friends and family to collect donation pledges that would match or exceed their bail.
Those arrested from facilities competed with one another in raising the most money, Hedrick said. They were shouting how many pledges they had gotten across the room to see who had the most, she said.
Most participants exceed their bail, Green said. The highest amount raised was $325 by George Souleret from the university’s mechanical services.
Raising $300 were Abby Hess and Robin Hawbaker, both nominated by their sororities, and Matthew Perdy, nominated by his fraternity.
University police suggested to the nominators that they inform the participants of their nomination before they were arrested in order to avoid problems, officer Randy Baran said. Participants have a week after the event to collect the money that was pledged to pay off their bail.
UREMS nominated junior Laura Zemcik to be arrested. She was in the library when officers handcuffed her.
“Hopefully it was the only time I’ll ever be in the back of a cop car,” she said.
University of Richmond’s Student Activities pays for all the expenses of the event, ensuring that every dollar raised warrants and pledged bail money goes straight to the Virginia Special Olympics, Green said.
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