UC Berkeley receives reports of body lice in campus buildings

Doe Library Centennial Celebration
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Campus officials have received reports that a man has been repeatedly disposing of body lice in some campus buildings, including Doe Memorial Library and the ASUC Student Union.

The Recreational Sports Facility sent an email to its employees informing them of the situation.

“(The individual) repeats the same pattern wherever he goes,” the email said. “First, he will collect a hand full of paper towels and a trash bin. After taking both items into a restroom stall he will wipe off countless body lice; depositing the towels and live insects in the bin.”

The email also said after the individual “deposited” body lice in the stalls, he would often find an open seat in a lounge area and “remain there for hours.”

Elizabeth Dupuisdirector of Doe, Moffitt and Subject Specialty Libraries, confirmed that the library issued a one-year ban to the individual Feb. 8 for “violations of the Library Code of Conduct,” although she did not specify what the violation entailed.

Christine Shaff, communications director of UC Berkeley’s Real Estate Division, was also aware of the issue, but said she did not know specific details about it. She said, however, that she believes that there is “nothing criminal involved.”

“I work with campus facilities and our pest management group and I understand that our pest management team has been called out over concerns about lice and that they’ve responded,” Shaff said.

UCPD spokesperson Sgt. Sabrina Reich said in an email that she didn’t have information on the situation, adding that UCPD “is precluded from releasing confidential information about medical conditions.”

Contact Ishira Shrivatsa at [email protected] and follow her on Twitter at @i_shrivatsa.