A man posing as a student lived on Stanford University’s Palo Alto, California, campus for nearly a year, according to a new report.
William Curry, who graduated from Vestavia Hills High School in Birmingham, Alabama, in 2021, was removed from campus on Thursday after allegedly attempting to take a television from a residence hall after living in the building’s basement for several weeks, according to a report by the Stanford Daily.
“The Crothers basement has temporary rooms that the university uses for students requiring a transition in housing; e.g. a maintenance issue that makes it unsafe to stay in a room. On several occasions, we’ve asked for a roster of residents living in the basement and have been told that the request couldn’t be accommodated because it would be a ‘student privacy violation,’” according to a message from a residence staff member.
“Without such a roster, we ultimately can’t verify who should and shouldn’t be in the dorm. This is a policy we have pushed back against and will continue to push back against,” it added.
According to the report, Curry was often seen carrying a Stanford backpack and said he was a member of the track team. However, others claimed that Curry had said he was a pre-med student at the university.
An Instagram account reportedly associated with Curry lists him as “Stanford 25’| Birmingham | @cokescholars.” The Coke Scholars handle apparently referred to the school’s Coca-Cola scholars program, of which he was not a member.
Curry reportedly told some people he was a transfer student from Duke University. He also had a Tinder account that listed him as a 20-year-old pre-med student at Stanford, with pictures of him involved in various student activities. His “About Me” section again noted him as “Stanford 25.”
The Stanford Daily reported that the school’s public safety department had been made aware of Curry’s squatting in December. Curry has reportedly been removed from the campus on multiple occasions yet continued to find ways to live in various dorms.
Curry was caught last Thursday living in a location on campus only about 1,000 feet from the first location where he had been spotted squatting.
“It seemed that he was a friend of the football players. So, anytime we saw him we let him in because it was like he knew people,” one student told the outlet.
Stanford spokeswoman Dee Mostofi said in a statement that Curry’s “persistence and ability to ingratiate himself with our student community has made it clear that gaps exist in those protocols.”
Some staff had been previously informed of Curry’s situation, but “there were no broad communications about him to all Stanford residences,” Mostofi added.
The university is reportedly reviewing its procedures to prevent similar incidents in the future.