Sexual assaults lead to defnse precautions

As local police continue their investigation of the recent alleged sexual assaults at Castleton State College, not too much has changed on campus. And according to Dean of Students Greg Stone, there is no new information involving the cases.

Changes in campus security, however, remain in the works.

“We are proceeding to install video recording surveillance cameras in the South St. lot very soon,” Stone said in an e-mailed response.

As of the last day before October break, no cameras had been installed.

The information forum on public safety was held close to a month ago, and that remains the most recent forum for open discourse regarding the alleged assaults on the CSC campus.

Although security has been boosted in the South Street lot since the alleged assaults, the need for surveillance cameras comes from the inability for that lot to be manned 24 hours a day.

It is Director of Public Safety Bob Godlewski’s intention to have the lot manned around the clock, but as he said last month at the informational forum, that is not always possible.

“Someone may leave their post for a moment or two to respond to something else,” Godlewski said.

One campus reaction to the alleged sexual assaults has been to provide two self defense courses in the SHAPE gymnasium. The concept of the courses falls in line with a recent comment by Stone regarding the current uncertain state of CSC.

“Since no perpetrators have been identified it is important that students continue being diligent about their own safety and watch out for others,” Stone said.

Ray LaMoria, a Rutland City Police Department detective who taught the two self defense courses, was contacted by CSC last month. The two courses he instructed drew over two dozen female students.

“From what I heard, when they left it was very positive,” LaMoria said.

For those who are still concerned about their safety, there are other steps to be taken.

Shealyn Siliski, a sophomore at CSC, did not attend the self defense classes. But she admits she was disturbed by recent events on campus.

“The week after everything happened I was a little scared,” Siliski said. “I haven’t seen any changes or more security, but a friend bought me Mace.”

Freshman Cailin McCormick shared some insight on how female students can better protect themselves on campus at night.

“A lot of my friends are guys and they usually walk me to wherever I’m going,” she said.

For those who would like to pursue more self defense training, LaMoria teaches a 15-week Rape Aggression Defense (RAD) course in Rutland.

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