Unclaimed items on NIU Police auction block

By Ross Hettel

Bicylces, jewelry, iPods and books are going on the auction block Sunday morning at the east side of the Huskie football stadium.

Once every semester, the NIU Police Department holds an auction of lost and found items that haven’t been claimed after a year, said NIU police Sgt. Alan Smith.

Bicycles left on bike racks and around campus are only up for sale after a notice has been placed on the bike informing the owner that the lock is going to be cut, Smith said. After that, they are placed in the police facility and go up for sale if they haven’t been claimed after one year.

Smith said the same policy holds for other items in the lost and found as well. If the owner does not claim them after a year, they are then included in the auction.

There may be good discounts found on certain items, but items can sell out fast. MP3 players and iPods sold from $8 to $50 at last year’s auction and sold out pretty quickly, Smith said.

Additionally, the bidding style is more user friendly than fast-paced professional auctions, Smith said.

“We used to have a professional auctioneer come in… but now we just take our time to give people an opportunity to get their bid in,” Smith said.

Not all students are itching for a bargain, however.

“I’m not currently in the market for anything, but if there’s a good price on a bike, I may take it,” said John Miller, senior computer science major.