Stabbing on Mick Drive and Victoria Street elicits concerns from Rowan students

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The timely warning system notifies students of crime on and around campus. - Graphics Editor / Julia Quennessen

Early in the morning of Friday, Feb. 16, a timely warning was sent out to members of the Rowan community detailing a violent incident that occurred a few hours prior to the message being sent out.

According to the warning, Glassboro and Rowan Police Departments responded to an off-campus incident of a reported assault at the intersection of Mick Drive and Victoria Street at approximately 2:37 a.m. Friday morning. During the assault, a male suspect described as a “light-skinned African American male, thin build, wearing a dark colored-zip-up hoodie and light-colored jeans” slashed a tire of a vehicle in the roadway and then proceeded to stab another male. After the stabbing occurred, the suspect fled in the direction of Holly Avenue before police arrived and was not found nor apprehended. 

The intersection of Mick Drive and Victoria Street is also the location of Victoria Hall, which houses the Department of Writing Arts. Just one block away from Victoria Hall is 301 West High Street, a building that serves as the headquarters for the Department of Public Relations & Advertising as well as the Rowan Art Gallery & Museum, two College of Communication & Creative Arts(CCCA) buildings that many CCCA students visit daily for their classes. 

For Arren Perez, a freshman economics major, the timely warning proved to be unsettling. With the incident occurring steps away from Rowan Boulevard, a high foot traffic area where students walk every day and buildings that he frequents, the news of the stabbing came as sort of a shock.

“I think there should be more cameras around because I don’t even see cameras at all on campus,” said Perez. “Like two weeks ago something happened as well, an assault, and there’s no evidence, there’s no cameras anywhere, especially towards the Victoria area.” 

Along with many academic buildings close by the intersection, Victoria Street is also home to student housing. Apartment complexes that surrounded the incident included 114 Victoria which offers housing for 468 students in 90 apartments, as well as 230 Victoria which holds over 400 students in 81 apartments

“This is pretty concerning, at such an early hour in the morning it’s really scary, someone slashing tires, stabbing someone,” said junior radio television & film major Parker Bennink. “Especially because next year I’m actually going to live on Victoria Street, I have a house set up to live there next year, a lot of students live over there as well there are multiple apartment complexes on Victoria.”

According to the Rowan Police Department, the suspect in the incident has since been identified and is not a student at the university. The nature of the occurrence was an aggravated assault and the disposition was non-student related. 

“This incident was not random –it was a targeted incident in relation to a domestic violence incident,” said Rowan Police Lieutenant Rachel Baum, “the suspect is not believed to be a current threat to the Rowan community.” 

In response to the timely warning, The Rowan Department of Public Safety will be staffing additional Police and Security personnel in added patrols both on and off campus during weekends and evenings. The Rowan Police Department currently has two newly hired officers attending the Gloucester County Police Academy and is accepting applications to fill three additional Police vacancies. Baum has advice for students who ever find themselves in a potentially dangerous circumstance. 

“If you witness a situation that appears unsafe or makes you uncomfortable, intervene if it’s safe to do so, elicit help from a friend, or go to a safe area and call for help,” said Baum. 

Rowan’s Student Patrol team and Police Department offer walking escort services for any student, employee, or visitor who may feel unsafe walking from one location to another on campus. Any Rowan community member can call 856-256-4922 to request a walking escort on campus. To ensure student safety and needs following the timely warning, Rowan’s Public Safety team will continue to supply resources to accommodate students and bring in additional patrolmen this semester.

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