Two freshman football players at Moravian College have been charged in connection to a break-in at a teammate’s dorm room during which a television, a silver chain and cash were stolen, according to college police.
Franklin C. Zeigler III of Cape May, N.J., and Dominic R. Montero-Dirzulaitis of Tamaqua, Schuylkill County, are accused of breaking into the room in Bernhardt Hall, 301 Locust St., sometime between Sept. 28 and Oct. 6, according to arrest affidavits filed by Officer Gregorio Mora of the Moravian College Police Department.
The victim, a junior, reported to police that the television, worth about $300; a silver chain, worth about $250, and $25 in quarters had been stolen from his room.
When interviewed by police on Wednesday, Zeigler, a linebacker who turns 19 on Friday, denied stealing the television and chain, saying that it was Montero-Dirzulaitis who asked him to hold the television and chain for him, according to the arrest affidavit.
But Montero-Dirzulaitis, an 18-year-old offensive lineman, had a different story. He admitted to police that he and Zeigler broke into the dorm room, the affidavit said. But, he said, it was Zeigler who suggested taking the television.
Then, according to the affidavit:
- “That’s a bad idea,” Montero-Dirzulaitis said he told Zeigler before walking out of the room. Moments later, he said, he saw Zeigler and another student carrying the television back to Zeigler’s room. “I can’t believe you took the TV and the chain,” Montero-Dirzulaitis said he told Zeigler.
- But the stolen items didn’t stay in Zeigler’s room. Adam Fitzgerald, another freshman football player, told police that Zeigler asked him to go to his dorm room, take the television and chain, and hide them in his dorm room. Fitzgerald told police that Zeigler admitted to stealing the items from a teammate.
- Fitzgerald said he handed the television off to another student, Luke Loughery, who hid the television under his bed in Wilhelm Hall. Loughery told police he did not know it was stolen.
- While visiting Loughery’s room, yet another football player, sophomore Andrew Racobaldo, spotted the television under the bed and informed the victim that he may have found the television. The victim visited the room and confirmed that the television was his.
Zeigler and Montero-Dirzulaitis were both charged with felony burglary, felony criminal trespass and criminal conspiracy. Zeigler was additionally charged with theft and receiving stolen property.
Both students were arraigned before on-duty District Judge Roy Manwaring and released on $10,000 unsecured bail.