Penn State Riot Damages Will Ultimately Total Well Over $200,000

| by Alex Groberman

Nearly everyone agrees that the Nov. 9 riot of Penn State students in response to head football coach Joe Paterno’s firing ultimately cost the university a lot in the way of pride and reputation. As it turns out, it also cost a lot of money.

According to the Centre Daily Times, a total of anywhere between $190,000 to $200,000 in damages occurred on the fateful night of Paterno’s termination, with approximately $180,000 of that being directly attributed to damage done to an overturned WTAJ van. The other $10,000 to $20,000 in damages reportedly comes from the wreckage of resident vehicles, parking meters and 10 light poles.

It’s also worth noting that the aforementioned damages total doesn’t include personnel costs. The police department reportedly had to authorize 125 hours of overtime to battle back against the riot, totaling over $8,000 in extra pay. Since then, the total accumulated hours worked as a result of the riot ballooned to 500 overtime hours. Some estimates indicate that the extra time could end up adding over $32,000 to the final bill.

All in all, 45 people were arrested on riot-related charges. Eight of those people waived their right to a preliminary hearing this past Wednesday.

The District Attorney’s office will consider assigning restitution to anyone who pleads guilty or is convicted on the riot-related charges.

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