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Framingham State warns students about "peeping tom" in dorm shower

Posted by Jaclyn Reiss  October 19, 2012 12:29 PM

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Framingham State University Police are searching for a person who took a picture of a female student while she was showering in her dorm's bathroom Thursday.

The student was showering on the sixth floor of Larned Hall around 2 p.m. when she saw what appeared to be either a black cell phone or digital camera pushed into the shower stall from beyond the shower curtain. The device flashed as if a picture was taken, and then whoever was holding the cell phone/camera left the bathroom. The hand holding the device was described as white, but officials do not know if the perpetrator was male or female.

The incident was reported by the woman who was in the shower.

The reported incident comes three weeks after the university banned two students last month amid separate allegations of sexual assault between acquaintances on the campus, as well as reports of a 30- to 35-year-old man who has been approaching women on campus and asking them to kiss him.

The university suspended the two students in September. One allegedly assaulted three different people in Towers Hall on different occasions, and all three came forward Sept. 19. The other student allegedly assaulted a female acquaintance in North Hall around 3 a.m. on Sept. 28. The incidents have no connection to each other, Framingham officials said.

The students have not been arrested, but are still banned from campus. The incidents are still being investigated by the Middlesex District Attorney's Office and the Framingham Police Department.

University spokesman Dan Magazu said all the incidents are isolated from one another.

"These types of things do occur on all college campuses, but it doesn't make them okay," Magazu said. "We're doing everything we can to get to the bottom of all of them."

Magazu said the university's dorm security is top-notch. The residence halls on campus are locked 24 hours per day, and students are given key cards with access to their own dorm only. Each dorm's entrance also has a security desk entrance that is staffed around the clock and monitored by security cameras. Anyone who does not live there must be signed in by a resident of the building, who takes responsibility for their guest.

"We feel like we have done a lot to put security measures in place," Magazu said. "We feel that Framingham State is as safe as any campus in Massachusetts."

Campus Police and the university's Office of Residence life are investigating the camera incident.

University Police officials urge community members to report any activity they believe to be inappropriate or suspicious in a timely manner to ensure the safety of the community.

Anyone with any information regarding this incident can contact 508-626-4911.

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Jaclyn Reiss can be reached at jaclyn.reiss@globe.com

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