After West Rez assault, Laurentian students wonder about campus safety

Around 3:30 a.m. on Saturday, October 27, 2018 Greater Sudbury Police received a call regarding an alleged assault that had taken place on campus at Laurentian University sometime after 2:00 a.m.

According to Kaitlyn Dunn, Corporate Communications Coordinator for the Greater Sudbury Police Service (GSPS), “the information received was that while in a dorm room, a young man had assaulted a young woman resulting in serious injuries to the woman’s face. The man had left the residence immediately after the alleged assault had taken place.”

“A family member of the young woman reported the assault, which is alleged to have taken place in the West Residence. The young woman was transported to hospital and treated for her injuries,” Dunn said.

“As a result of the investigation a 22-year old man from Sault Ste. Marie was arrested and charged with Assault Causing Bodily Harm.”

Dunn could not confirm whether the 22-year old man was a student at Laurentian, but she was able to confirm that he did not live in West Residence.

Isolated incident, police say

While this not the first time an assault has taken place on Laurentian University campus, the investigation suggests that this is an isolated incident.

However, it is imperative that Laurentian students feel safe, both on and off campus.

“It’s always scary when you hear of someone getting attacked” Morgan Grare, a second year student said. “It’s even [more] scary though when it happens at your school, the place that you visit almost every day of the week.”

“It’s hard to believe that something like this could happen here at [Laurentian] because it always seems like a such a peaceful, quiet place. But I guess there’s no place that’s ever [truly] safe.”

First year student, Chloe Archer, said that despite the alleged assault, she still feels that Laurentian is a very safe space.

“What happened was terrible, there is no question about that” Archer said. “But I really do believe that [Laurentian] will do everything that [they] can to [ensure] student safety.”

Archer went on to say that while she may not live in the dorms, she has many friends who do.

“I have some friends that live in [West Residence], and after hearing about what happened it really freaked them out. For them this is their home, and it’s terrible to think something like this
could be happening in the dorm room next to you.”

According to Laurentian’s policy on sexual violence, the university “strives to maintain a safe and inclusive environment for all students, faculty, and staff and will not tolerate any violence, disclination, or harassment.”

For students who are experiencing any kind of violence, whether on or off campus, please know that you are not alone, and that Laurentian and the Sudbury community are filled with support to help you.