Basketball Players Become Theft Victims During Game

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By Allison Brown

GARFIELD HEIGHTS, Ohio -- Winning a basketball game is something to celebrate, but a crime recently soured some excitement for the Cuyahoga Heights High School boys basketball team.

Police tell Fox 8 at least five of the athletes had electronics stolen from the locker room at the high school on Friday evening. The team was playing Rittman in the Division IV Sectionals game, which was held in Garfield Heights.

The theft was noticed in the locker room after the game. Police believe the crime happened some time between 5 p.m. and 7 p.m.

"One of our friends saw that his phone was missing, and we thought he was joking at first,” said Nathan Bryk, a center for Cuyahoga Heights. “It makes me really upset."

Garfield Heights Police Chief Robert Sackett explained that many on the Cuyahoga Heights team didn’t lock up their items but thought the locker room door was locked.

"We got a call from the Cuyahoga Heights coach that several of his players during the course of the game had items taken from the locker room," Sackett said.

The theft victims reported items like iPhones, even money missing.

Thankfully, school surveillance video, phone tracking and witness statements helped find three juveniles who police believe are responsible for the crime.

Many of the items have been returned to the rightful owners.

"I just want to say it's a little ridiculous to do something like that. We're all just there for a good reason, and it's bad that it has to happen like that," Bryk said.

Garfield Heights police tell Fox 8 the suspects will most likely face charges through juvenile court.