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An Open Letter to Pace University Security

Safety+first.+Photo+by+Joseph+Tucci.+
Safety first. Photo by Joseph Tucci.

Safety first. Photo by Joseph Tucci.

Safety first. Photo by Joseph Tucci.

Joseph Tucci, Managing Editor

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Dear Pace University Security,

Sincerely I mean this, with the lone exception of Director of Safety & Security Vincent Beatty, you guys are terrible at your jobs and keeping Pace’s campus safe. The officers of Winfield Security Corporation need to go.

A couple of years ago a good friend of mine, who wishes to remain anonymous, had her living space on campus broken into by intoxicated athletes, one of whom choked her, as well as assaulted several of her friends.

Security was called during this event and it took 40 MINUTES for an officer to show up after my friend and her friends managed to remove the intoxicated athletes themselves.

My friend took this matter to security, and Assistant Director of Safety & Security Anton Kozlowski interviewed all involved. My friend showed him pictures of the assailant she took, as well as identified him using the roster of the team which he belonged to and gave the information to Kozlowski.

Kozlowski said that security “would investigate” and for the victims to not go to a higher authority, like the police, according to my friend. WHAT KIND OF SECURITY SERVICE TELLS PEOPLE NOT TO GO TO THE POLICE AFTER AN ASSAULT?

My friend was never contacted by security again after that and said athlete suffered no repercussions.

He still got to go to school and play on one of Pace’s wonderful teams. Every time I saw him around campus I would throw up in my mouth a little.

I’ve not forgiven any of you because of how you handled the situation since then.

Because of this, after class, I always try to make sure to walk my female friends back to their cars just because of how uncomfortable I feel even thinking about the possibility that something might happen again.

This, of course, isn’t the only incident that Winfield security has screwed up.

Seidenberg Graduate Assistant Jordan Adelman shared with me a story of how security failed to handle a situation where a student was suffering from a medical condition, leading the student to have to be taken away by paramedics.

While working in his office in Goldstein Academic Center, the student with a medical condition left a classroom and approached Adelman telling him to tell their professor if they passed out from their condition. Adelman asked the student if they wanted to call someone and they answered, “yes.”

Adelman called Pace Security and asked them if they were the right people to call for the situation. They answered that they were and that they’d send someone over to help.

After 15 minutes an officer arrived, who according to Adelman, didn’t seem to know what they should be doing. The officer asked the student what they wanted, which they answered to get Gatorade from Kessel because it helps with their medical situation. The officer became hostile with the student and questioned why Gatorade would help, according to Adelman.

The officer then asked Adelman to get the Gatorade for the student instead; however, he couldn’t because he was at work. The security officer then used his radio to ask another officer to get the Gatorade.

“The officer went on the radio and asked one of his partners if he could get it, and he said it would be at Kessel. He said to get whatever Gatorade is there, it didn’t matter what color or flavor,” Adelman said.

After another 15 minutes passed the officer who was supposed to get the Gatorade from Kessel went to Goldstein instead, thinking that the vending machine that sells Coca-Cola products would have Gatorade. However, Gatorade is only sold on campus in Kessel, which the student had mentioned to the officer beforehand.

The student never received Gatorade and their condition worsened. The officers ended up calling the paramedics who took the student away in an ambulance for treatment, according to Adelman.

Adelman feels security’s poor judgment and slow response time is what caused the situation.

“She gave them a suggestion on how to handle the situation, which they weren’t really following that well. They ended up taking too long and made the situation worse,” Adelman said.

While I understand security guards aren’t equipped to handle medical situations, why the hell would security tell Adelman that they were the right people to handle the job? Why not send medical personnel in the first place? And why were they nasty to a student who was suffering and didn’t pay attention to their directions on how to deal with a medical condition?

In the 45 minutes that this situation took place, the student could have died and that would have been on you guys because of your poor judgment. The same thing applies to the situation where my friend got assaulted, with you taking 40 minutes to show up.

Just in this academic year alone, I have experienced many other security failures as well.

Why did it take Martin Hall getting set on fire twice, in the span of two days, by an arsonist for security to realize that they should have a better camera system in the dorms? And to this day the arsonist still hasn’t been caught as far as we know.

I remember after the fires happened talking to people about how unsafe they felt, one girl I knew transferred out of Pace because of it.

The identification card checks at Entrance 3 do nothing as well. Guards don’t even look at the cards most of the time. I’ve seen people get onto campus flashing Romantic Depo discount, credit and Metro cards.

The checks only occur on the weekend and at night anyway, so any other time a psycho shooter could just walk onto campus if they wanted.

A student, who wishes to remain anonymous, shared a story with me about how when a friend who doesn’t attend Pace was able to get on campus through the identification card check at Entrance 3 by just mentioning the student’s name to the security guard on duty.

“[My friend] mentioned my name and they let her in. Is this a university or a VIP club?,” the student said.

And not to mention how a security guard walked away from an alleged victim who was apparently assaulted and ignored when they asked for help.

Don’t get me wrong I really don’t hate the security guards here, most of you are entertaining guys.

Being offered a bottle of hot sauce at Entrance 3 when I’m trying to get onto campus, seeing you sleeping at the security booth, seeing you flirt with female students, seeing you walk around aimlessly, having you stop your car in the middle of the library parking lot to talk to your friend for three minutes when I’m trying to move my car, and having you forget I’m on the E-Board of the Chronicle after I’ve called you to open the office 100 times because you were never able to get me the swipe access I asked for and then being nasty about it when you come to actually open the office, is absolutely hilarious.

However, the entertainment value is not worth putting people’s lives at risk. I wouldn’t trust a single one of you with my life. We need to clean house.

Vinny, believe me, I have great respect for you, and I thank you for all the help you’ve given the Chronicle over the years. I understand you have a very tough job, managing these clowns between the Pleasantville and New York City Campuses and I do not blame you for their failures, but I do ask that you push Pace to use a better service than Winfield.

I understand that getting a better service would be more expensive and might require a tuition increase, but it’s worth it. Vinny, you deserve a better team, and incoming Pace students deserved a safer campus than what I had.

Oh, and I’m still waiting for swipe access to the Chronicle office.

Much love,

Joe Tucci

A special thank you to my friend who was assaulted and Jordan Adelman, for allowing me to share their stories. I strongly encourage anyone else with similar experiences to not be afraid to speak up. This opinion is mine and mine alone, it does not reflect what other members of the Chronicle’s staff feel.

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