GLASSBORO — A pair of Rowan University students have been busted for causing several thousand dollars' worth of damages to borough holiday decorations as one of the young men tried to climb a decorated Christmas tree, police said.

Early Friday after 2 a.m., Glassboro Police responded to calls of a disturbance at Glassboro Town Square, where witnesses said one man appeared to be trying to scale the tree and remove its star topper.

As officers approached the man got down and ran away, leaving behind a section of wrecked lights and some downed branches from the fresh-cut tree, police said.

Using witness accounts, an anonymous tip and at least one cell phone video, borough police assisted by Rowan Police identified the first man as 19-year-old William Fowler, of Demarest.

Police said surveillance footage from the area also appeared to show Fowler and 19-year-old Matthew Lubicky, of Delran, damaging a large Santa hat decoration within the town square, after first appearing to try and pull bicycles down from a locked wall mount within the Mick Drive parking garage.

Inside the garage, police said video showed Fowler then kicking the rear bumper of a parked vehicle, causing damage.

The total cost of damages and labor to repair the decorations is estimated near $6,000, according to police.

A university spokesman confirmed that both young men are Rowan students and said Monday "They will go through our judicial process, as well."

Both Fowler and Lubicky are faced with criminal mischief, obstruction and disorderly conduct offenses, while Fowler also is charged with resisting arrest, police said.

Due to the pandemic, this year's tree lighting ceremony was done without the usual in-person crowd — instead, it was carried out by Glassboro Mayor John Wallace and posted to Youtube for viewers to watch.

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