WAYNE, N.J. (CBSNewYork/AP) — Five students at New Jersey’s William Paterson University face charges stemming from the alleged sexual assault of a female student in a dorm.
University President Kathleen Waldron told students and faculty in a statement that the alleged attack occurred Tuesday on the Wayne campus and the men have been barred from the school.
Waldron did not say when the woman reported the alleged incident, but said she was “attended to by university counselors and police officers” as soon as she did.
The five suspects are all 18 years old and are being held on $200,000 bail each, CBS2’s Janelle Burrell reported.
A university spokesman told the Record newspaper Jahmel Latimer, of Hoboken, was charged with aggravated sexual assault and kidnapping; Darius Singleton, of Jersey City, was charged with conspiracy to commit sexual assault, criminal restraint, aggravated sexual assault and aggravated criminal sexual assault; Garret Collick, of Paterson, was charged with conspiracy to commit sexual assault, criminal restraint, aggravated sexual assault and aggravated sexual contact; Noah Williams, of Camden, was charged with conspiracy to commit sexual assault, criminal restraint, kidnapping and aggravated sexual assault; and Tremaine Scott, of Vineland, was charged with conspiracy to commit sexual assault, criminal restraint, kidnapping and aggravated sexual assault.
According to court papers, the suspects reportedly turned off the dorm room light and used physical force to assault the victim, CBS2’s Christine Sloan reported.
The accused are scheduled to make their first court appearance Tuesday. It’s not clear if they have lawyers.
Several female students who are friends with the suspects, however, said the men are not capable of committing the crimes.
“They’re not rapists,” sophomore Julianna Capiris. ” … It’s really sad because Noah … and Garret, they’re really good guys.”
“I’ve spent time with them without other girls being there,” said sophomore Adama Fofanah. “They’ve never said anything disrespectful to me. Never crossed any lines. They were all very, very, very respectful.”
In a statement, Waldron said her deepest concern is for the woman.
“I am angry and dismayed that this crime was committed on our campus and allegedly by students,” Waldron said. “My deepest concern is for the victim of this criminal act who has courageously stepped forward to take legal action and seek justice. No expression of anger or sadness on my part can alleviate the harm done to the victim and my heart goes out to her and her family.
“It is our responsibility to provide a safe environment for all its members and to be a campus where students can grow and thrive,” Waldron added. “We are committed to ensuring that William Paterson University will always be a place where students feel safe and sound. This commitment extends from our classrooms to our residence halls and to everywhere on our campus.”
William Paterson students were concerned after hearing about the arrests.
“It’s a disgrace,” student Jenna Farwell said. “I think it’s disgusting.”
“It’s a terrible thing,” said Zamere Johnson.
“Very concerned. That could be anyone,” said student Ashley Wise.
“Unfortunately, it happens,” said student Jayson Kuehm. “It’s not just a problem on this campus.”
An alleged attack recently led to arrests at Ramapo College, and the University of Virginia has suspended all fraternities temporarily as it investigates alleged rapes, WCBS 880’s Sean Adams reported.
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