A little after 2:30 a.m., Saturday, Oct. 11, a woman visiting the Ondine ran down the fifth floor hallway. An Ondine resident, going under the alias of Jasmine Ming, was the first person with whom the survivor spoke.
“The survivor ran upstairs immediately after the incident,” Ming said. There, Ondine residents noticed she was in hysterics and asked her what had happened.
Entering Ming’s room, the survivor said, “He raped me.”
“I said, ‘Who?’ She said, ‘He’s on the fifth floor … umm … that’s all I can say,'” Ming said.
In response, Ming ran down the hall, hoping to find her floor’s resident attendant (RA), but they could not be located.
“Coincidentally, I ran into the RA from the 14th floor doing rounds,” Ming said. She asked the RA to come with her and said that a girl had been raped. Once back in her room, Ming said she “just started writing what she (the survivor) told me.”
Ming said she asked the survivor for details about the perpetrator. “Scars, hair, tattoos, clothing, the floor it happened on, the room number, what bed. I knew it was essential to ask these questions immediately after,” Ming said. “I have some training in rape counseling.”
Ming asked the RA to secure the fifth floor, making sure no one left, in hopes of finding the man who fit the victim’s description. Campus security was called and Ming left. “Everything from this point on is information from the survivor and friends,” Ming said.
Campus security arrived to interview the victim. They accompanied her to the floor and room where she remembered the assault. Campus security knocked on the door and asked the survivor to identify the perpetrator.
“She (the survivor) was standing in the doorway being intimidated by these males, and they expected her to answer the question if any of them had raped her,” Ming explained with disbelief. The survivor didn’t identify the perpetrator and said she wanted to go home. She was taken to a hospital with a friend. Ming said, “Based on the medical examination, the police thought it would be a good idea to press charges.”
“[I think] campus security mishandled the situation, bringing the survivor down (to the perpetrator) right after it happened.”
Ming and other Ondine residents, with the help of Students for Unity, “split up the males and females in the Ondine and had confidential discussions about the things that were happening,” Zoe Wiezel (also speaking under an alias) said. Wiezel said some “people in the hall claimed it was her fault because she was drinking.”
In response to this incident and for awareness purposes, a workshop on sexual assault is being planned. Wiezel, Ming and the Women’s Resource Center are holding the workshop today in Smith Memorial Student Union, Room 328. The workshop will run from 5-7:30 p.m.
“Students don’t understand that if you’re drunk and you don’t consent, it’s still sexual assault,” Wiezel said.
Sexual assault “is unwanted action,” Ming said. “It’s an act of power, it’s re-emphasizing control over another and it’s meant to humiliate the victim/survivor.” She continued, “The act is horrifying, but when perpetrators get away with it, it’s ever scarier.”