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Nyack College Incident Update
Posted by Deborah.Walker on Thursday October 6, 2005
It has been nearly 48 hours since the incident involving one of our students at our Nyack, NY residential campus. We want to update you on things that we know not to be true at this time; facts as we know them, which can be shared; and steps we have taken to insure the continued safety of our historically safe campus community.
- This incident did NOT involve the black bear that was wandering on property adjacent to the college earlier this week.
- There was NOT a body of a student or anyone else found in a dumpster on campus.
- The student was NOT abducted or dragged into the wooded area along our property.
- At this time there is NO information to confirm that this was an attempted sexual assault.
The following are facts as we know them.
- The student involved in the incident was taking a walk on our campus.
- While walking in the parking area of our graduate and married student housing complex, the student heard a noise along the tree line and decided to go and investigate the noise.
- The student does NOT know exactly what happened after walking to the edge of the parking area where the trees and brush begin but believes that she was pushed down from behind.
- The student involved in the incident DID make a mobile phone call to a friend who does not live in Nyack who notified two of the student’s friends about the call to say the student was disoriented.
- The two friends contacted campus security and they together began looking for the student who was involved in this incident.
- A resident of the housing complex heard someone crying and went to the edge of the parking area and began to provide assistance to the student involved in this incident.
- The student was upset and was lying at the edge of the parking lot along the base of the wooded hillside.
- An off-duty police officer picking up his children who were at the housing complex contacted the authorities immediately.
- Local ambulance and police arrived on the scene and handled the situation in a very professional and caring manner.
- College personnel, when arriving on the scene, assisted the local authorities and continue to provide support and assistance.
- The student was taken to Nyack Hospital and released to family after examination and treatment for minor scrapes and bruises.
- The student is remaining at home through the weekend and hopes to return to school.
- A resident of the housing complex has described someone seen earlier in the evening in the parking area, which may or may NOT have had involvement in this incident. The resident has NO knowledge of what this individual’s involvement in the events that occurred may have been, if any.
- If anyone has information about this individual described as a 6-foot white male seen wearing khaki shorts and a light colored t-shirt and seen driving a small/mid-sized red car that evening, please contact the South Nyack Grandview Police at 845-358-0206.
The following steps have been taken to assure our students, faculty, and staff of our commitment to maintaining a safe campus community.
- Even though Nyack College’s residential campus is a relatively small campus, we have added a second overnight patrol car effective immediately.
- South Nyack and Orangetown police, who patrol three public roads that are adjacent and running through our campus, have also added additional coverage to the area.
- While this incident is being investigated, and until we can determine the exact nature of the events, this heightened police and security coverage will be maintained.
- An Open Forum was held with students on Wednesday, October 5, 2005 to discuss campus issues and, in particular, to field questions and hear concerns from students related to this incident and campus security.
- An audit of campus lighting and other landscaping issues which impact the “feel” of well lit areas on campus was performed on October 5, 2005 and a series of lighting and tree pruning repairs will be undertaken immediately to respond to student concerns.
- All students, especially female students, have been encouraged and instructed to walk in pairs both on campus and off campus after dark.
The student and family impacted by this incident remain in our prayers as they recover from this. We thank all of our friends who have kept them and our campus community in your prayers during this time.
If you are a parent and have questions, please feel free to contact our Student Development and Resident Life staff at 845-358-1710, ext. 370. All media inquiries can be addressed to Deborah Walker, Director of Publications and Media Relations, at Deborah.Walker@nyack.edu or 845-358-1710, ext. 143.
October 6, 2005