Student arrested after falsely reporting suspicious activity in Oak Hall

The Oak Hall building on UConn's Storrs campus. A University of Connecticut student was arrested Thursday afternoon after falsely reporting suspicious activity in Oak Hall in an attempt to avoid attending a class in the building. (Matthew Zabierek/The Daily Campus)

A University of Connecticut student was arrested Thursday afternoon after falsely reporting suspicious activity in Oak Hall in an attempt to avoid attending a class in the building, according to a police report from the university's Police Department.

The student, Nicholas Ryan, called the university’s police department at 11 a.m. on Thursday from his West Hartford home to notify authorities that a friend in the building at the time had seen three men with large black duffel bags enter the building and that one of the men left without a duffel bag, according the report.

UConn police quickly responded and determined that there was no suspicious behavior in the building and that no threat existed, according to the report.

Ryan, 22, later admitted during an interview with UConn police investigators that he had fabricated the story in hopes that the building would be evacuated so that he would not need to attend a class in the building later that day, according to the report.

Ryan was arrested at around 3:00 p.m. Thursday and charged with falsely reporting an incident in the first degree and breach of peace in the second degree. He was held overnight by campus police and had a bail hearing in Rockville G.A. Court the following morning, whereupon he was released on his own recognizance, according to the Connecticut Judicial Branch’s website.

Ryan now awaits arraignment, at which he will enter a plea.

In the state of Connecticut, falsely reporting an incident in the first degree is considered a class D felony, according to the state’s penal code. Ryan could face a sentence ranging from one to five years if found guilty, though the felony does not contain a mandatory minimum sentence, according to the state’s website, potentially allowing a lesser penalty.

UConn Police Department Deputy Chief Hans Rhynhart, the department's spokesperson, was unavailable for comment.


Matthew Zabierek is managing editor for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at matthew.zabierek@uconn.edu. He tweets @MatthewZabierek.