Students question their campus safety | News Feature | Indy Week
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Students question their campus safety 

Grover Davis, a 20-year-old student from Gary, Ind., was assaulted last month in an Atkinson residence hall room by two unidentified intruders. As a result of this incident, St. Aug's students began to question their safety around campus, and particularly in the residence halls.

"I feel that I should have been protected," Davis said. "Someone from the security booth should have seen my attackers."

The institution's main entrance is guarded by campus security. They monitor vehicles entering the campus. However, there is more than one way to enter the campus. For example, there is another entry way and security booth behind Atkinson. This particular booth, however, is always empty and has a big hole in the gate that can allow anyone who wants to enter the campus.

"We do not have a gate all around campus," Byron Bullock, vice president of student affairs, said. "Students need to take more responsibility for their personal safety."

Bullock added that there is no college or university that has a gate that completely surrounds its campus.

Students say they want to live in a safe and peaceful environment, but the question remains about what the duty of the institution is in creating such a place.

"I feel that if we had more campus security a lot of things would be avoided," Koreama Fitzhugh, a junior Sociology major, said.

There are also those who feel that one should use good judgment in different situations to protect themselves.

"Why would anyone open their door at 3 a.m.?" April Clark, a senior communications major said. "Most people are asleep during that time."

The incident involving Davis was investigated by both the Raleigh Police Department and Campus Security. Drugs--possibly marijuana--were involved. But Davis denies all drug allegations.

"St. Aug's doesn't want to be responsible for what has happened to me," Davis said.

He also said that immediately after the incident happened, the dorm director and Campus Security did nothing. They did not call the ambulance or take him to the hospital. Another Atkinson resident took him to Wake Medical for treatment after the incident.

Owen Forbes, residence life coordinator, declined to discuss the matter.

Bullock stated that the reason Campus Security did not call for an ambulance is because they didn't know about the attack. They found out about the incident when Wake Medical notified the Raleigh Police Department, which then notified Campus Security.

Although the campus' main entrance is guarded, the rear entrance near Atkinson where Davis lived, is not.

Bullock said that a change in security has been made but that students need to be careful of their surroundings.

"Students shouldn't put themselves in dangerous situations," he said. "The incident with Grover Davis is not uncommon. It could have happened anywhere to anyone." EndBlock

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