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Mystery of the missing backpacks solved

By Christy Boden | Posted - Aug. 31, 2012 at 5:24 p.m.



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SALT LAKE CITY -- The mystery of the missing backpacks has been solved.

Fifty backpacks meant for Catholic Community Services were mistakenly given to a professional organization that was picking up items for a different donation.

Michael Vaughan, provost and vice president of academic affairs at Weber State University, organized the donation for Catholic Community Services' annual Backpack Bonanza! drive. But when Vaughan went to pick up the 50 backpacks from the WSU campus store a few weeks ago, they were gone.

Surveillance video showed a man picking up the backpacks, but no one seemed to know who that man was. When the story of the missing backpacks aired Thursday night, that man contacted WSU police, telling them he was the man in the video and explaining that it was all a big misunderstanding.

The man says he was sent to pick up 50 bags for an event his organization was holding. Bookstore employees, assuming the man was there representing Catholic Community Services, mistakenly gave him the backpacks, rather than the plastic bags he should have received.

Though most of the backpacks were given out already by the professional organization, the man prompltly returned the few remaining backpacks to WSU police upon realizing the mistake. Those have been passed on to Catholic Community Services. WSU also earlier replaced the 50 missing backpacks.

No charges are expected to be filed.

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Christy Boden

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