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Man is arrested for odd behavior at UT

The homeless man, recently freed from jail, walked up to a dorm door, kicked it and yelled.

Published April 20, 2007


TAMPA - In this week of heightened security concerns on college campuses, a man's threatening shouts and odd behavior outside a University of Tampa dorm Thursday got him arrested after he tried to elude police.

Officers charged 22-year-old Anthony J. McClaney with resisting arrest without violence. Students called campus security when they said he walked up to a door at Alfred and Beverly Austin Hall about 3 p.m. and began kicking it and yelling.

Jail records show that he was released from jail on Wednesday after spending nine days behind bars for trespassing. He spent time in jail in September on a similar charge.

"This is a homeless man," said Tampa police spokeswoman Laura McElroy, although jail records list a Riverview address for McClaney at 10906 Golden Silence Drive.

Authorities didn't see the need to lock down the campus, and McElroy said police are used to responding to the campus for calls that a homeless person has wandered onto the grounds and caused a disturbance.

UT spokesman Grant Donaldson said the man was "yelling kind of incoherently." Four students watched as he walked up to the door at Austin Hall with a towel wrapped around his head. The dorm's doors can be opened only by a special access card, and the man never gained entrance, Donaldson said.

After a few moments of ranting, the man left the campus and went to a nearby gas station along Kennedy Boulevard. Students pointed him out to an officer who found the man talking to himself, McElroy said.

"His behavior was obviously odd," she said.

Donald said that the university sent out an "information global e-mail" to students, letting them know what happened because there were several who witnessed the incident.

"This incident highlights the continuing importance of vigilance on all of our parts as members of this community," the e-mail said.

Austin Hall houses 425 students.

In 2004, police had a four-hour standoff on the rooftop of a neighboring UT dorm with Guillermo Valdes, an employee of the company in charge of food service for the university. Though Valdes threatened several times to jump, he was eventually arrested.

Times staff writer Kevin Graham contributed to this report.

[Last modified April 20, 2007, 00:39:55]

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