Otago vice-chancellor accused of stealing bongs from student flats

What is it with universities these days? Massey has had it’s problems with theor vice-chancellor and Don Brash and free speech, and Victoria has been trying to push through an unpopular name change.

And at Otago the proctor has been reported to be going into student flats uninvited and taking away bongs.

Critic Te Arohi:  Proctor Enters Flat Without Permission, Steals Bongs

A Leith Street flat says University Proctor Dave Scott trespassed and stole their property when he entered their house while they were out and took several bongs/water pipes.

About three weeks ago, the Proctor was visiting flats on Castle Street and Leith Street North to deliver letters about initiations. The entire flat was away, apart from one person who was asleep upstairs. The flatmates said the Proctor let himself in through the unlocked back door, where he found several water pipes sitting out on a table and took them.

Because they weren’t home, the flatmates didn’t know what had happened to the pipes and assumed they had been robbed. They estimated the pipes were worth $400.

“We thought someone had stolen them, but then we thought that if anyone had done it around Castle/Leith someone would recognise our pipes as they are well known,” one flatmate said.

The Proctor returned the next day, and told them that he had gone into their flat and confiscated the pipes. According to the flatmates, he told them that as long as they cleaned up the flat, he would let them off with a warning and wouldn’t take it to the police.

That attracted wider media coverage, and then a follow up: Second Flat Claims Proctor Entered Home Without Permission, Took Bongs

A second flat is alleging that University of Otago Proctor Dave Scott entered their home without permission while everyone was out and took their bongs. This comes soon after Critic reported that the Proctor entered a Leith Street North flat three weeks ago while no one was home and took $400 worth of bongs.

According to one flatmate, who asked to remain anonymous, the Proctor visited their Castle Street flat in June, when no one was home, to pick up rubbish in the area. While he was there, he took two bongs, which had been sitting in the lounge, around the back of the flat.

The flat is privately owned. The flatmates said the bongs were “valued at over $300 combined.”

They said that one flatmate was called into the Proctor’s office for a meeting, where he was asked “what they were and why we have them etc.,” and ultimately let off with a warning.

“As an ex cop we feel as if he should be more educated around the law of breaking and entering, especially taking items out of the flat with no permission. If we walked into his house or even his office and took something which we feel is illegal, then it would be a different outcome,” he said.

And it could be more widespread:

Hey so I have had 4 more reports of flats having bongs fuckin stolen by the proctor so far this year.

Anyone looking to share their stories on this abuse of power please email: critic@critic.co.nz

This is absolutely fucked and we have to stand up to this fucking authoritarian repression

Update: I have a meeting to discuss this issue with the proctor tomorrow, and depending whether he agrees to sign our Code of Proctor Conduct, will be organising a protest on Thursday with specific demands and outcomes.

get ready to get on the fkn rark fam.

Update 2: Proctor cancelled our meeting. Protest is on:

Protest details:

So the proctor cancelled his meeting with me tomorrow.

This means we need another outlet to have our voices heard, to express how we feel about this abuse of power.

For those that don’t know, the proctor has been randomly entering flats by the back door, sometimes with noone home, and been pinching beugs.

This is an abuse of our rights as students, and as citizens, and unless we respond it sets a dangerous authoritarian precedent. We need to let the University of Otago know this is not appropriate behaviour of someone purportedly representing our institution.

We will gather at the corner of Castle and Dundas, on the uni drive, march down to the proctors office, then head round to the clocktower where we will submit our proposed Students of North Dunedin Code of Proctor Conduct:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1lQGETJKgmVzsQ6wz5P60x_lkzzbr0X0FHkV7HbJRA6Q/edit

Chants and sign planz to come, feel free to chip in w ideas too x

This is gonna be so dope, get ready to rark it up yo for all the breathas to come: FIGHT FOR OUR RIGHTS ♥

It seems likely Critic will have more to say about this. If the proctor is entering flats uninvited, and if he is taking thingd, this is a serious matter.

20 Comments

  1. bjoneskiwi

     /  September 24, 2018

    Apart from how dodgy it is for the proctor to enter the flats… the lesson here is – put your bongs away out of sight!

    • Gezza

       /  September 24, 2018

      Why’s he doing it though? How come he only seems to do it to certain students? Are they stoned at lectures, have they been seen smoking on campus? He shouldn’t be doing it but are they inviting unwanted police attention?

      • Blazer

         /  September 24, 2018

        assuming that is the proctor in his straight jacket=suit and tie he is such a system imprinted droogue ,he probably thinks he’s doing Gods work.

        • Gezza

           /  September 24, 2018

          The word always makes me think of proctologist. 😕 So maybe it’s not surprising he might seem to be an arsehole?

          When I looked it up there are various definitions but generally the proctor is a university official whose duties can include supervising examinations and the behaviour of students.

          Sounds like he’s an ex-cop. Probably feels doing something still technically illegal is bad behaviour. The argument the bongs might be being used for smoking tobacco is a Tui – Yeah, Right. 😀

      • Kitty Catkin

         /  September 24, 2018

        Are these university flats or privately owned ones ?

        This might make a difference.

        • Kitty Catkin

           /  September 24, 2018

          Proctors have been in universities for centuries (literally) so I was surprised that the term is still in use.

          Bongs used for smoking tobacco ? Possible but unlikely.

        • Gezza

           /  September 24, 2018

          @Kitty – well, at least one of them is privately owned, according to this from PG’s second link:
          . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
          “A second flat is alleging that University of Otago Proctor Dave Scott entered their home without permission while everyone was out and took their bongs. This comes soon after Critic reported that the Proctor entered a Leith Street North flat three weeks ago while no one was home and took $400 worth of bongs.

          According to one flatmate, who asked to remain anonymous, the Proctor visited their Castle Street flat in June, when no one was home, to pick up rubbish in the area. While he was there, he took two bongs, which had been sitting in the lounge, around the back of the flat.

          The flat is privately owned. The flatmates said the bongs were “valued at over $300 combined.””

          • Kitty Catkin

             /  September 24, 2018

            This is a very odd story indeed,

            I’d have to admit that I’d be keeping quiet about losing something that can really only be used for illegal drugs 😀 😀 😀

            Someone I had their crop stolen just as it was ready to harvest….and the thief/ves had the gall to leave a neatly painted sign stuck into the (now bare) ground…’It’s a cruel world, baby.’ Need I say that the people didn’t go to the cops ?

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  September 24, 2018

              PETE; you might want to change the headline, the Proctor and the Vice Chancellor are quite different, and the VC doesn’t seem to have been involved here.

  2. lurcher1948

     /  September 24, 2018

    Life’s a bitch,try posting using educated English not white gangster speech and if you use illegal drugs don’t leave your bongs out like elite white shit for brain young Nationals

    • Kitty Catkin

       /  September 24, 2018

      How do you know that they are Young Nationals ? This is most unlikely.

  3. I heard on local news that there is to be an investigation, as to whether the proctor ‘overstepped the mark’.. he is NOT a cop. He apparently entered the flat without permission & removed the ‘bongs’ with ‘no authority’ to do so.. theft ?

    a couple of years ago, I helped on a street market stall for Whakamana museum.. someone noticed the Uni. proctor standing nearby taking photos of us. I am not even connected with the Uni.
    We were there to educate & discuss the issues.. ‘nothing illegal to see here’ even the cops stayed clear..

    So who really broke the law ?

  4. Chuck Bird

     /  September 24, 2018

    I am very anti-drugs but the police have a process to follow. I hope this dude gets prosecuted.

    • Kitty Catkin

       /  September 24, 2018

      What about the drug users whose bongs they were ?

      I think that all concerned should just let it drop quietly.

  5. ODT: Uni claims no right to search flats

    The unusual action taken by proctor to confiscate bongs from a student flat will unlikely be repeated though the University of Otago stands by his decision.
    In a statement released this evening, a University of Otago spokeswoman said either the proctor Dave Scott, nor the University claim a right to search private premises.

    “What was done here was unusual and unlikely to be repeated.”

    Mr Scott, speaking about the initial incident, judged the occupants of the flat would rather deal with him informally than have the police search the flat so he decided to enter the flat and take the items.

    The flatmates were told of what happened and the matter was resolved in a way the university was confident was to their advantage.

    The bongs, which the flatmates acknowledged had been used for consuming illegal drugs were destroyed.

    “The Proctor is often called on to make judgments as to how to manage difficult situations and in doing that he gives careful thought to the interests of students
    involved.”

    https://www.odt.co.nz/news/dunedin/campus/university-of-otago/uni-claims-no-right-search-flats

  6. duperez

     /  September 25, 2018

    Accepting we hear part of the story:

    Is the Procotor related to Clare Curran? How dumb is he, that in the sort of world we’re in, he has no sense of proper processes or how things are likely to be seen and portrayed?

    Did he see a computer in a flat he entered without permission and take it thinking it could be used for illegal activity? Or take other stuff ‘just in case’? The rugby player who entered a flat earlier this year in Dunedin in circumstances which were understandable, was pilloried and ridiculed. This guy needs his head read.

  7. I read that the Proctor is an ex-Cop.. he probably could not help himself, went into attack mode; ILLEGAL DRUGS.. must seek & destroy !! :/

  8. I read a ‘fighting fund’ is being established to consider a private prosecution over this ?! 😀