In a startling turn of events this Tuesday, the University of Kentucky Police Department arrested 15 individuals involved with the UK Alerts program in connection with a string of crimes. According to a representative from UKPD, university staff themselves are responsible for 357 of the 360 gas leaks near campus in the last year, amid a whole host of other crimes.
Further investigation has revealed that the phenomenon occurred due to a combination of boredom among UK Alerts staff, difficult economic times, and a fear that the department would not meet their Alerts quota for the year. Each staff member receives a dollar per UK alert. Three additional dollars are added to the employee’s paycheck if the alert occurs after 2 AM, and the employee receives a four-dollar bonus if the alert involves an event too far away from campus to be relevant.
Wilbur Barnswiggle, former member of the UK Alerts team, described the escalation of the problem: “You see, it started as a joke. We were bored one day, and Frank had gotten some really noxious burritos from Qdoba for lunch, which was gonna be trouble for the whole office. Doris thought it’d be funny to write an alert for a gas leak in the area. We ended up sending it out fifteen times . . . the students loved it!”
Barnswiggle then giggled for a solid seventy seconds before continuing: “And last year, when Frank’s mom came to visit him, we sent out ‘COW ON THE LOOSE. LOL.’ Boy, did Frank hate that! But we made, like, five bucks on that deal. That’s serious money. You can almost buy a wad of cold fries from K-Lair with that.”
According to UKPD, after the initial chortling, Barnswiggle and his colleagues realized the potential for upping their salaries. Staff began sneaking into houses and gently turning the knobs on the stoves or ovens in order to trigger UK Alerts and thus profit from the ensuing panic. Eventually the operation expanded to involve more serious crimes and more hardened criminals. According to Barnswiggle, these employees graduated from turning knobs to attacking gas pipes with bludgeons and waffle irons. The latter of these crimes was considered especially egregious, as waffle irons are not even permitted on campus.
Police have stated that more arrests may be made, and that attempts to capture other perpetrators could result in a car chase, gun battle, and knife fight likely to take place in the William T. Young Library bowl within the next week. Students should not expect to be alerted.
By Petunia Frisbie