TUPD, Other Students And I Have The Right To Know If Someone Pulled Out A Gun On Our Campus
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Politics and Activism

TUPD, Other Students And I Have The Right To Know If Someone Pulled Out A Gun On Our Campus

I don't take you or your jobs for granted, but please keep us informed.

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TUPD, Other Students And I Have The Right To Know If Someone Pulled Out A Gun On Our Campus
Ronnie Schoen

Dear TUPD,

First of all, I want to thank you for everything that you do. Being an officer is not easy, and I'd like to thank you for responding to incidents in a timely manner and for usually letting the TU students know what's happening.

However, there were two recent incidences on campus that should have been handled better.

The first was on Thursday, April 26, at around 8:30 p.m. I was at my friend's dorm when my phone started blowing up with Snapchats and GroupMe messages. From what I had heard there was a fight between some Towson and Morgan State students and a gun and knife were involved. I also heard that later on someone was assaulted near Cook Library.

At this point, I was all the way across campus at a friend's dorm and I was scared to return to my own dorm. I ended up texting a friend and asked for a ride home. I found out that she was off campus but when I told her I felt unsafe she immediately came back to drive me to my dorm.

I still do not know what exactly happened that evening, and the "Timely" Warning didn't come until 11:11 p.m. and all it said was "an incident was reported at student event near the Union Garage. TUPD/ BCPD responded to disperse a large crowd. The area is all clear."

I feel that as a student I have the right to know if someone pulled out a gun on my campus. In light of all the mass shootings that have occurred, plenty of which being at schools, the police should be completely transparent with us and in a timely manner. If I hadn't heard about the fight from my friends then I might have walked back to my dorm and potentially gotten hurt.

Even though I did know of the incident, I still believe TUPD should have stated in the email sent a couple hours later exactly what had happened at the union and if anything had happened at Cook. If we are not aware of the facts rumors could be spread and we could be unsafe.

The second incident happened on Sunday, April 29. Two members of AEPi, a Jewish fraternity, were assaulted near their house on the street right across from campus. I found out about this incident on Monday, not through the University, but in an article from The Baltimore Sun.

The event was an antisemitic hate crime, and as a Jew, this is personal to me. The road where this took place is the same road where I attend Shabbat dinners at Chabad, and I'm appalled that something like this has happened so close to me. Towson's President did send an email about the incident, but that was not delivered until Tuesday around noon.

Although I do appreciate that an email was sent, I believe that it should have been sent much sooner and I believe that this email may not have been sent without the Baltimore Sun article being rapidly shared on social media. The letter is quick to specify that the event was off campus, however, since it is right next to the campus' Chabad I don't think that is the most relevant.

I believe the university should have responded to this incident much quicker and released the names and faces of the assaulters so that I along with other Jews can keep our distance if we ever see them on campus. I'd also like to be informed of the disciplinary action that has been taken. We as students have the right to know so that we can be safe.

So TUPD I don't want you to think that I take you for granted, and I really respect you. However, by not telling us quickly about these incidents when you let us know right away about euthanizing a deer is jeopardizing our safety. So please, in the future if there is an incident involving a weapon or an incident that is a hate crime either on campus or really close, let us know immediately.

Sincerely,

Veronica Schoen

Towson University Class of 2021

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