Students charged with trespassing on College Ave.


Houses on East College Avenue stand vacant with “No Trespassing” signs posted on front porches on October 12, 2015.

Matthew Merchant

Six Kent State students were charged with criminal trespassing after being arrested on East College Avenue early Friday.

Kent Police Department Lt. Michael Lewis said the department recently increased patrols of College Avenue after consistent reports of trespassing and other suspicious activity in the area.

The vacant houses, set to be razed for construction of the new police department, are not structurally sound with holes in the floor and ceilings, Lewis said. Police have also received reports of homeless individuals taking up residence.

“One of the reasons we are trying to keep people out of them is because they are dangerous,” Lewis said. “Because there’s been so much damage done to them since they’ve been vacated, we’re not even certain of the condition of these houses.”

Three Kent State students an a non-student were arrested and charged with one count of criminal trespassing each.

Luke Kollar, 18, a freshman communication studies major, was charged with one count of criminal trespassing and one count of consumption of beer liquor involving underage persons.

Madison Zahorchak, 20, a freshman integrated health studies major, was charged with one count of criminal trespassing, one count of prohibitions and one count of obstructing official business and falsification.

“We’re not looking to make pretty arrests for criminal trespassing. We’re not looking to arrest students for fourth degree misdemeanor trespassing,” Lewis said. “We’re doing this to protect students from their own risky behavior.”

“No trespassing” signs were posted after the houses were vacated weeks ago, Lewis said, and the city is contracting to put fencing up within the next two week to keep anyone from trespassing anywhere near the properties.

Matt Merchant is an senior reporter for The Kent Stater. Contact him at [email protected].