Culprit: Robert Frost bust theft was a drunken college prank in 1985

Aug. 27, 2013 at 2:38 PM

WICHITA, Kan., Aug. 27 (UPI) -- The man who stole a bronze bust of poet Robert Frost from Wichita State University in Kansas in 1987 said the theft was a drunken prank.

Mitchel Potter, 45, of Lamar, Mo., who was arrested in August 2012 on a tip called in to the WSU police department and later pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor count of receiving stolen property, said he took the bust as a drunken prank when he was a 19-year-old fraternity pledge at another school, The Wichita (Kansas) Eagle reported Tuesday.

"It's a hard, hard lesson," Potter said. "It's embarrassing to have something come back after years.

"I just wanted to let the university and Wichita know that I am truly apologetic for my actions as a youth, and I just didn't want people to think that I'd come up there and took it maliciously," he said. "That wasn't my intention."

Potter said he had been spending time with pledges from the Wichita State chapter of the same fraternity he was pledging.

"They took me back to Wichita State. And we took up with an active chapter there," he said. "I was doing a lot of beer bongs, I guess."

Potter said he does not want to name his university or fraternity.

Potter was sentenced to two years of probation and 100 hours of community service.

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