Police asked to step up patrols after more campus racial incidents

Katie Cantrell

Connor Severino

Transcript correspondents



The Delaware Police Department has been asked to increase its patrols of Ohio Wesleyan’s campus in the wake of two racially-charged incidents this week.

The request comes after local police and OWU Public Safety responded to two, separate race-related episodes. Last year, racially-tainted incidents occurred on campus in both the spring and fall semesters.

The most recent episodes occurred in Bashford Hall over the weekend where someone wrote a racially offensive word on a community bulletin board and tore a poster in half, which showed an African American student.

And just before midnight Tuesday, an older man in an olive-green coat and jeans near South Liberty Street and Rowland Avenue yelled a racial epithet and pointed at three students, one white, one black and one Asian. The man ran off behind nearby houses when a PS officer responded.

OWU President Rock Jones and Dwayne Todd, vice president for Student Engagement and Success, were unavailable for comment, but Cole Hatcher, OWU’s director of Media and Community Relations, said the university has zero tolerance for these sorts of episodes.

Meanwhile, Delaware police have been asked to boost their nightly patrols, he said.

“There is no evidence to prove these issues are tied together, but there is some pattern forming here,” Hatcher said. “When an incident like this occurs, it’s important to make sure the students feel comfortable enough to be able to address these types of issues, along with addressing these concerns right away.”

Residential Life office has been meeting with students living at Bashford Hall to discuss any concerns, he said.

Both PS and Delaware police said the two recent incidents are likely unrelated.

“We have no reason to believe either of these two incidents are related to each other and would encourage anyone that might have additional information to give us a call on our tip line,” said Delaware police Capt. Adam Moore.

Sean Bolender, OWU’s PS director, said no additional information has been obtained.

“Students should never hesitate to contact us when they experience any situation where they don’t feel safe and need assistance,” Bolender said. “Our primary objective is to collaborate with Delaware PD to identify individuals engaged in this behavior.”

Should a suspect be identified as a person not associated with OWU, the administration can generate a no-trespass order barring them from campus, Bolender said.

The most recent incidents follow the vandalism of a diversity bulletin board in Hayes Hall last spring and the posting of 25 stickers with pro-white messages linked to the white supremacist group Patriot Front in November.

Patriot Front has been described as an organization that embraces racism and intolerance. Similar incidents occurred around the same time in November at The Ohio State University and reportedly at other college campuses.

After the stickers were removed, OWU created nine unique diversity posters and placed them around campus. A campus gathering was also held to create community and send a strong message that division and white supremacism is unwelcome. A new series of posters under the ONE OWU Campaign are being created now, said Juan Armando Rojas Joo, campus’ chief diversity officer.

Anyone possessing information related to these incidents can contact PS at 740-368-2222 or the Delaware police tip line at 740-203-1112.

Public Safety’s battle with drug use

By Minkyu Jung, Transcript Correspondent



Usage of drugs on Ohio Wesleyan University’s
grounds have been steady, but staff and public safety are doing everything they can to contain and limit the situation.

Interviews with Robert A. Wood, director of the university’s public safety, and Eli Reed, resident assistant of Stuyvesant Hall showed that while the usage of illegal drugs are still ongoing within the school grounds, both groups are doing what they can to inhibit such uses. The Ohio Wesleyan University annual security and fire safety report is also in sync with what the interviewees said.

Both Wood and Reed confirmed that there has been usage of illegal drugs in the university’s grounds. Eli recalled that he did notice occasional smell of marijuana on weekends even before he became resident assistant, and became more aware since he became one. Wood said that the usage rate of marijuana was second only to alcohol.

The report’s statistic also showed 13 arrests on drug law
violations alone in 2017.

“The number one drug we see most abused is alcohol…marijuana is number two,” Wood said.

Wood also showed the public safety’s stance toward
drug use inside the university campus.

“Obviously the illegal use of narcotics must be dealt
with according to both criminal law as well as student
conduct requirements,” Wood said.

According to Wood and Reed, the university’s staff and public safety are doing everything they can to re-
strain the usage of drugs. There are multi-office cooperation, regular patrols, and even room searches for pin-
pointed rooms.

“Yes, many offices play a part in helping (…) counseling, student conduct, dean’s office almost all play some part in helping to control the drug problem on campus,”
Wood said.

“Our duty as RAs is, if we can pinpoint odor to a
specific room during rounds, or even outside of rounds…
then you are to call public safety right away, and they
take care of it,” Reed said.

Public safety sends alert to students to shelter in place

By Transcript Staff

Delaware Police Department (DPD) is searching for two possible suspects for a “reported crime involving a gun” in downtown Delaware.

Ohio Wesleyan’s Public Safety (PS) sent an alert at 11:47 a.m., Feb. 17, notifying the campus community to shelter in place while police search for the suspects.

“Police have two suspect descriptions: a bald white male with a red shoulder bag and white tennis shoes and a person wearing all black,” the alert from PS said.

The shelter was lifted at 11:55 a.m., when PS sent another alert saying, “Delaware Police say OWU is able to resume normal operations. You no longer need to shelter in place.”

To receive PS alerts, students can subscribe by visiting this link: https://www.owu.edu/student-life/campus-safety/owu-alert-system/.

Seniors Munir Qaddourah and Doug Sanders witnessed Delaware Police during the search and posted photos and videos to their Snapchat stories.

The Transcript has attempted to contact PS but has not been able to reach them yet.

In a press release, DPD stated they are investigating a bank robbery in connection to the shelter placed on campus.

“[The robbery] occurred around 11:18 a.m. today at the Chase Bank branch, (61 N. Sandusky Street, Delaware),” the press release stated. “A lone male robber entered the bank, threatened a patron with a knife, and demanded money. He left the bank on foot with an undisclosed amount of US currency.”

The suspect is Jose Angel Santiago Cintron, a 42 year old man from Delaware. According to the press release and later confirmed by DPD Captain Adam Moore via voicemail, the suspect is in custody.


Photo of Suspect Jose Angel Santiago Cintron

“He is being held on one count of robbery and one count of kidnapping related to today’s incident”, said Moore.  

“[The suspect] was taken into custody without incident, several blocks from the bank, approximately 10 minutes after the initial call,” the release said.

Cole Hatcher, director of media and community relations, also sent an email to the campus community at 2:01 p.m., saying the man was arrested in the vicinity of the campus and no one was injured.

In his email, Hatcher outlined a set of protocols to follow in case of emergencies:

“Follow a run, hide, fight protocol – in that order.

Get to a safe place as quickly as possible and secure yourself there. Lock and/or barricade doors as much possible for your immediate area. (If you are in a classroom, or similar, do not leave a safe space to reach personal offices, residence hall rooms, etc.)

Assess your surroundings to identify potential secondary escape routes and possible ways to subdue/disarm an assailant in a life-threatening situation. (Could you break a window if needed? Do you have pepper spray with you? Do you have access to heavy objects that may be thrown or otherwise used to subdue/disarm an assailant?)

Stay sheltered until you receive an all-clear message. This message likely will be sent via the OWU ALERT emergency notification system.”

*This story will be updated as more information becomes available and was last updated at 5:07 p.m., February 17, 2017.

ResLife offers ways to be aware of alcohol consumption on campus

By Areena Arora, Managing Editor

Every year, more than 1,800 college students between the ages of 18 and 24 die from alcohol-related injuries in the United States, according to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA).

Factors such as unstructured time, widespread availability of alcohol and inconsistent enforcement of underage drinking laws contribute to college students’ alcohol consumption, according to NIAAA’s website.

On Feb. 7, freshman Luke Gabbert was found dead in the Delaware Run Creek, south of 28 Franklin St.

Hypothermia and an injury in the upper cervical spine from falling in the creek caused his death. Alcohol at the level of 0.21 percent was also detected, which is nearly three times the legal limit of 0.8 percent.

Gabbert was a new pledge of Phi Kappa Psi fraternity and also a soccer player.

In May, Gabbert’s file was closed by the Delaware County Prosecutor who concluded no felony charges will be filed. Julie Datko, public information officer, said Gabbert’s file will not be presented to grand jury.

Meredith Dixon, assistant director of Residential Life said ResLife, takes an active role in preventing alcohol-related accidents in several ways—by providing educational programming related to alcohol and drugs, by offering programs that provide an alternative to drinking and by enforcing campus policies.

Bob Wood, director of Public Safety, said, “We recognize alcohol consumption is a huge issue … Our officers are always actively patrolling and our first priority is always the safety of the student.”

According to OWU’s student handbook, “Immediate medical attention should be sought for students whose safety is endangered by the overconsumption of alcohol or other drugs.”

Dixon said, “The Amnesty Policy is also set up as a resource for students … This policy is in place because we, as a university, are not seeking to get students in trouble – we want to get students help.”

The Amnesty Policy, written in the student handbook, says, “Students who seek medical attention for themselves or others because of the overconsumption of alcohol or other drugs will not be charged with violations of the alcohol or illegal drugs policies through the Office of Student Conduct. However, students who repeatedly endanger themselves by overconsumption may face administrative intervention in other forms.”

If students choose to drink, Dixon said she recommends they plan ahead—know who is hosting the party/event, who will accompany them and have a plan for when to leave/how to find their friend if separated.

“Don’t accept drinks from anyone you don’t know, and don’t drink anything if you don’t know what it is or where it came from,” she said.

She also said students should recognize what their limits are and drink less than that. If you realize you’ve had too much to drink, ask a sober friend for help or call Public Safety.

“Again, per the Amnesty Policy, we’d rather have students get help when they need it than try to handle things themselves when they are in need of medical attention,” she said.

Wood said that OWU has a pretty good reputation for tolerance. It is OK to drink or not. “Do what’s comfortable for you,” he said, emphasizing that students shouldn’t feel pressured into drinking alcohol.

There are plenty of resources on campus to help with alcohol-related issues.

Dixon said, “If students are concerned about alcohol abuse, there are several resources on campus, which include Counseling Services, Health Services and the Chaplain’s Office (all of which are confi-
dential). If students have concerns about a friend or roommate, their RA or RLC can help them approach that subject with their friend [to] provide assistance.”

On Tuesday, Aug. 30, more than 500 OWU athletes took the “It’s on Us,” pledge. OWU’s athletics department is focusing this year’s programming on a national NCAA program called “It’s on Us.”

According to an email by faculty athletic representatives, the national program was student-initiated and is aimed at promoting proactive prevention and reporting sexual assault.

“The motto, “It’s On Us,” communicates that each person has a responsibility in this cause,” according to the email.

On Friday, Sept. 2, OWU’s soccer team hosted a memorial game for Gabbert and played against Hope College. Gabbert’s jersey (number 19) was retired at the game.

Hidden talent in the Public Safety office

Photo courtesy of Facebook.
Photos courtesy of Facebook.

David Fradkin, Transcript Report

Chris Mickens, a Public Safety officer, discovered his passion for designing jewelry on an Ohio Wesleyan mission trip to the Rosebud Indian Reservation in South Dakota.

As an activity to pass time, Mickens and the attending students started making traditional Lakota beadwork. But it wasn’t until the summer of 2013 that Mickens began producing jewelry.

During that summer, Mickens’ mother passed away. His mother had a vast collection of earrings.

“If I didn’t know what to get [my mother], I knew I could always get her earrings,” Mickens said.

Initially, it was a coping mechanism and that fostered his passion for designing jewelry, especially earrings.

For more than 20 years, OWU has had a relationship with the Rosebud Reservation, which is the home of the Sicangu Sioux, one of the seven tribes of the Lakota nation.

“OWU has been sending mission teams for many years now. It was Chaplin Powers’ brainchild basically,” Mickens said.

Creating jewelry also helps him with deal with his mild obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). He said designing jewelry helps prevent his OCD from occurring in other places in his life and he can use it as an advantage when creating pieces of work that require fine detail.

Public Safety Officer Chris Mickens.
Public Safety Officer Chris Mickens.

As of now, Mickens has only designed some basic necklaces and bracelets and noted he is planning to create some that are more complicated.

Other creations include beading guitar strings and some medallions, specifically ones in Lakota style that are made in a circular piece of leather where beads could be sewed on to make a variety of patterns.

Mickens uses a large assortment of materials in his work. When he does “beading,” it particularly relates to the Lakota style. The beads he used are called seed beads.

“They are very small and made of glass, Mickens said. “And the colors of them span the spectrum.”

One of Mickens’ best pieces is untitled, but it has a larger glass rainbow bead in the middle, surrounded by wire that has smaller beads around it.

He started out with very little supplies: beads, headpins and ear wire. “This is the pair [of earrings] that kind of told me I knew what I was doing,” he said.

Mickens’ jewelry is mainly sold on his Facebook page to friends and family. One of his goals is to use the revenue he generates through his sales to help the Cuba mission team who has some financial struggles.

10305334_924157833372_5618431147265981173_n-2 (1)But he said his ultimate goal is to open a nonprofit organization, where all proceeds would be used for either purchasing school supplies for elementary school kids or provide a scholarship.

His mother helped out the community by donating school supplies to elementary school students, so starting a nonprofit organization honors his mother, he said.

Mickens would not consider labeling himself an artist or someone who comes from an artistic background.

He studied physical education and recreation of dance briefly in college, but came home after his second year when he had a child.

Public Safety Rumors

Photo courtesy of Twitter.
Photo courtesy of Twitter.

DJ Fradkin, Transcript Reporter

If you’ve heard rumors about Ohio Wesleyan students being seen driving OWU Public Safety (PS) vehicles and giving out parking tickets, your sources aren’t wrong. 

At the beginning of the 2015-16 school year, PS opened a few positions to students, mainly for enforcement.

PS offered three positions in the fall semester and offered two positions during the spring semester, which have already been filled.

The students who are currently employed remain anonymous. Rumors that these students are working undercover arose, but these were found to be false.

“It is like any other job on campus. We obviously don’t put them in a public safety uniform, but they will have identification and a security vest,” said Robert Wood, the director of PS.

Students in duty can be seen driving a PS marked vehicle or an Acura, which is currently unmarked.

This position offers students around six hours of work each week.  The responsibilities of this job primarily includes ticketing, but they could receive other tasks such as counting the number of cars parked in each lot or assisting with building lock up on the academic side of campus.

The information regarding wage was not disclosed, but “the pay is fairly decent because students are out in the cold and it probably pays better than some other jobs around campus,” Wood said.

Prior to this year, John Ciochetty, a PS officer,  mainly handled ticketing. A few PS officers who worked full time were let go this year due to pay cuts.

But the new system works really well as it supplies students with employment and the students are less expensive to pay than full time employees, Wood said.

A different rumor also arose that the PS department is having students track down Yik Yak and other social media posts.

Junior Isabella Flibotte said, “The school needs to loosen the leash on the students and let them enjoy their college experience without feeling as if they’re constantly watched like high school students.”

Freshman Victoria Chavez said, “If a serious issue arose and became harmful then they should step in, but other than that, they should not be involved.”

The reactions from most students indicated they were not in favor of PS monitoring their social media.

Wood disproved the rumors and said they don’t track down student’s social media. “Jay does a Facebook thing, but we don’t do anything other than that and don’t plan to do that,” Wood said.

If students are interested in learning more about this job, they can speak to a representative at the PS office.

Parking remains an issue

By: Alanna Henderson, Transcript Correspondent

Photo courtesy of Twitter.
Photo courtesy of Twitter.

It’s survival of the fittest for Ohio Wesleyan students when it comes to finding a parking spot on campus.

OWU students are frustrated that they have to pay for a parking permit and put additional money in parking meters on the street and then walk back to the dorms late at night because they can’t find a spot near their residence hall.

Currently, the B parking passes are priced at $175 for a full year and C passes are at $15. Permit prices drop 50 percent on March 1.

B lots include the residency side whereas C lots include the Jay Martin Soccer Complex, Selby Stadium and a few spaces on the far west side of Williams Drive.

Including faculty and staff, there are 1,500 parking spots available on OWU’s campus. However, for student parking, there are a total of 1,040 spots. Only 443 B permits and 215 C permits are issued.

As of Nov. 17, 957 parking citations were issued.

Public Safety (PS) has approached the distribution of parking permits in several different ways and this year has been the least problematic.

In previous years, there has been a lottery­style drawing for the freshmen and sophomore classes to get a parking pass. There were 70 spots offered between the two class levels. In this case, it was the luck of the draw for those students.

This technique, led to more students parking on the street, which caused problems for Delaware residents and police. This resulted in parking permits opening up for everyone on campus.

However, students still park on the street.

Junior Doug Dodridge has had a B permit all three years, but finds better spots on the street. “I hate parking here. I think it’s absolutely ridiculous that I paid $175 for a parking pass,” Dodridge said. “I’m feeding a meter every time I go to class because I can’t find a place to park my car.”

Senior Nate Goodhart has seen the price of parking passes increase dramatically over his four years and feels the parking situation hasn’t gotten any better.

“If PS can get a parking spot for their golf cart, I should get one by my classes,” Goodhart said.

This year, PS lowered the price of C permits to $15 making it more affordable. PS thought this might increase the availability in B lots since C is more reasonably priced. PS does not plan on lowering the price of B permits anytime soon.

Freshman Lyndsay McMullen purchased the C permit but intends on upgrading next year. For now, she doesn’t mind walking, but feels a B pass would be more convenient.

To help resolve some of the parking spot battles, manager of PS Ramon Walls advises more students to partake in the car­sharing program with Enterprise. There are approximately 120 students registered for the car­share program.

To apply for the car­share program, a credit card and license is required. From there, drivers can book reservations for the day and time. Gas and damages are all covered in the membership fees.

For more detailed information, contact PS.

“With the addition of the new Simpson Querrey Fitness Center, we have changed the A parking hours in the science center from 6 a.m. to 5 p.m. to a more flexible time, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.,” Walls Junior Jillian Bell has had a B permit all three years and still struggles with parking problems.

“All the parking lots have huge potholes which I thought would be fixed after being here for three years,” Bell said.

PS along with many student drivers would love to see parking lots paved again and spots added, but it is simply not in the budget.

Walls likes the idea of building a parking garage by Ham­Will. Denison University has a parking garage on campus that offers a large sum of student spots.

Parking has been an issue for students at OWU for years now.

For the time being, when it comes to finding a parking spot, may the odds be ever in your favor.