Stewart Avenue bridge, the location of the stabbing that occurred last Wednesday evening.

Cameron Pollack / Sun Photography Editor

Stewart Avenue bridge, the location of the stabbing that occurred last Wednesday evening.

October 2, 2016

After Stabbings, Increased Safety Measures Fail to Arrest Concerns

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While Interim President Hunter Rawlings announced the implementation of increased campus safety measures after last week’s stabbing, some Cornellians expressed concern that precautions do not extend far enough.

After Wednesday night’s violent altercation and last month’s fatal stabbing of Ithaca College student Anthony Nazaire, both Rawlings and Cornell Police Chief Kathy Zoner sought to assure students that they are safe at Cornell.

“Safety is our top priority as violence has no place on or near our campus,” Rawlings said in an email. He added that, although there is no ongoing threat to Cornell, security provisions have been bolstered, mentioning that there will be an increased number of police patrols and Blue Light escort teams.

Despite these measures, some students and parents say their safety concerns persist, explaining that, although no Cornellians were harmed in Wednesday night’s incident, the presence of violence on or near campus this semester has been startling.

Andrew Cho ’17 questioned the effectiveness of the University’s Blue Light system, saying he feels that Cornell should do more to keep perpetrators off of campus.

“I don’t know a single person who uses Blue Light Escort teams,” he said. “The school should make greater effort on campus safety by only allowing Cornell-affiliated people on campus after a certain time.”

However, Jung Won Kim ’18 said that, as the stabbing victim and suspects involved had no connections to Cornell, the incidents that occurred Wednesday night have not affected his sense of security on campus.

“It’s just unlucky that it always seems as though non-Cornellians, for some reason, like to come to Cornell to commit crimes,” Kim said.

Steven Salenik ’17 said he has felt less safe after the incident and plans to rely on personal measures to ensure his continued well-being.

“This just reminded me that Ithaca is not really any safer than any other American town,” Salenik said. “I now consider carrying a gun on me in Ithaca in the places where I am legally allowed to do so.”

Many have also expressed disappointment in the performance of the Ithaca and Cornell police teams, who have not publicly identified the perpetrators in either of the stabbing incidents this semester.

  • Alum

    Ahh….finally a small bit of concern from CDS regarded MURDER on campus. With Halloween approaching, maybe outrage over inappropriate costumes will provide enough distraction to allow CDS to forget about an UNSOLVED MURDER of a student on campus.

  • Barbara O’Mara

    Violent crimes by “townies” has been a problem for years. When I was on campus in the late 70s, I was afraid to walk back from the library at night, so I studied in my dorm. I was afraid to go jogging around Beebe Lake in the early morning, because a woman had just been raped there by a “townie”. The blue light system started while I was o campus because of the rapes. It’s hard to keep non-Cornell people off such a huge campus. The Cornell and Ithaca police are trying hard to protect the Cornell community, but students must also be vigilant and take care to avoid potentially dangerous situations.

  • Disgusted beyond belief

    How any parent, student , or alum is not pushing the local police for outside help in solving these crimes is ludicrous. A WITNESSED murder on campus over a month ago and NOTHING?? Then a stabbing this past week with 2 people fleeing and the victim “knew them” and NOTHING About arrests or their whereabouts? THIS is beyond unsettling and sickening and I can’t even imagine how the family of the Ithaca student must feel. That story has had no updates or progress in its investigation??

  • Kenny

    Totally agree with Disgusted Beyond Belief!
    I am counting the weeks till the police solve the crime on 8/28/16

  • Massfats

    Drove through campus midweek, after 9 p.m. It is entirely too dark — better lighting desperately needed, as well as security cameras. Did not see a single police or security officer, and plenty of people walking alone. Students AND parents should be VERY concerned.

  • Gustavros

    Not a single cornell student has been harmed in the incidents this year. Unless you’re involved in sketchy business with townies you have nothing to fear. The amount of fear-mongering in the comments in these articles is absurd.

    • simmi87

      So it’s okay just because he was an Ithaca College student?

      • Gustavros

        In terms of Cornell students’ perceptions of safety, yeah. I’ve partied with IC students, I’ve partied with townies, and I’m in a greek organization at Cornell. I saw the most altercations when IC and townies were mixing.

  • A Townie

    Thank you Gustavros. Is anybody in the Cornell Community willing to acknowledge that since Mr. Nazaire was attending a fraternity-sponsored event, presumably intended for Cornell students and their guests, that the killer(s) may actually be a CU student? A student whose buddies, perhaps frat brothers themselves, are keeping their loyal mouths shut?
    Easier to automatically suspect the “townies”. Well, thanks to Cornell’s continual expansion it is hard for students and faculty to escape contact with the locals, but if Cornell wants to house everybody on campus, and throw a giant wall around the perimeter a la Trump, I’d be OK with that. Just throw a PILOT check over the top to us townies every once in a while.

    • Gustavros

      It was an open event for the community. Historically black fraternities’ events (including omega phi psi which hosted this event) are nothing like typical frat parties and their events are open to non-student community members. I highly doubt that a Cornell student was the killer, let alone one of the 20 or fewer brothers of the fraternity in question. It was probably another IC student or non-student attendee.

  • The townies vs. students is not the issue and in fact is downright destructive. What is at issue is that a month ago someone was murdered within a crowd of students and NO ONE has been arrested. Clearly the Ithaca police and CU police need help from experienced detectives to find the murderer. Until I hear that the state police (or NYC police) are helping with the investigation, I will continue to make noise. This is complete and utter incompetence if measured by results. We need some leadership here — time to step up Mayor of Ithaca, President of Cornell, President of Ithaca College — someone! Too much complacency, not enough urgency or leadership! Do you see these comments? Someone is even suggesting they’ll start carrying a gun. Great.

  • Lol

    “The school should make greater effort on campus safety by only allowing Cornell-affiliated people on campus after a certain time.”

    Yeah, good luck enforcing that one without opening a can of worms. Last week’s stabbing didn’t even happen on campus itself, for one.

    “This just reminded me that Ithaca is not really any safer than any other American town.”

    Oh puh-lease, try living in an area where you can’t be out after dark or even wear certain color clothing during the day without the fear of getting shot.

    The precious, sheltered little babies (and their parents) are going to be in for a huge shock if they move to a big city after they graduate.

  • “Townie” AND Cornell student

    The IPD and CUPD have a suspect in the murder and are simply waiting for the DNA to get back- nothing they can do to rush that process. IT TAKES TIME. Quit blaming them and let them do their job. As for only allowing Cornell affiliates on campus after hours, HAHAHAHA good luck! Are you kidding? How the hell are they supposed to be enforcing that? You cannot beg for increased patrol and also for the authorities to keep people off campus. There is not enough of them to do so and it’s a waste of time. Cornell extends too far into Ithaca and to actively keep people off “Cornell” property is absurd. Further, the latest stabbing incident didn’t happen on Cornell campus. Stewart Ave is lower Collegetown and not owned by the university. That incident was completely unrelated to Cornell. People need to grow a pair and quit whining about things that are out of Cornell’s and Ithaca’s control. Crime happens and as much as the police try to stop and prevent it, it cannot all be prevented. Trust your local police to do the best job that they can and leave it alone.

    • Is there an official update?

      In absence of communication, it is natural to assume there is nothing to communicate . . . i.e. no progress. What you stated here is new news to many of us and I’m wondering why we are reading it in the comments section of an article and not in a some other more official comminication. The latest communication I saw is from Cornell Daily Sun saying suspect was named, but cannot be found.

      Cornell has 22,000 students and Ithaca College has 7,000 students (58,000 parents) who care about the outcome of these stabbings. Ithaca has 30,000 residents who care that the perpetrators are caught. Positive progress (stabber was identified) — but not good enough. Who is in custody? Cavalier attitudes like yours frankly do not instill confidence. Tangible progress speaks volumes. Tell me why we should have confidence in CU or Ithaca police at this point.

      I agree with you, separating Ithaca from Cornell is pointless, impractical and silly. I like the interaction of these communities.

      • inside scoop

        I am related to an IPD officer so they have shared that with me. I think they are just waiting to say anything until the DNA comes back just to protect themselves if anything goes awry.

        • Results Count

          Maybe you can let us all know when the bad guys are in jail. Activity is interesting. But results are what count.

  • Mad

    if they had a suspect in the murder and we’re waiting for DNA then they would share that wouldn’t they??? Or if they didn’t want to be that specific, they would let us all know that the case is progressing somehow and that is still their main concern- we’ve heard nothing!!!! By the way, I am a parent on campus visiting and last night walked around bc my kid was studying late in the library, I didn’t see one campus police or security person. Don’t know where the “extra security” is AND THE CAMPUS IN GENERAL, I felt was very dark – needs more lighting!! !

  • Mad

    OFFER A REWARD!!!!!!!!!!! It’s been 6 ?? Weeks and nothing leading to a suspect for a witnessed murder on campus??????? ALUM, PARENTS, STUDENTS-RAISE YOUR VOICES!!either for reward or demand experienced outside murder detectives from NYC!! This is insane.Who the hell is going to want to apply to a school with an unsolved murder on campus?? also who wants to keep their kid on s campus where something like this is unsolved?? And how about the family of the Ithaca student?? SEND EMAILS AND MAKE PHONECALLS DEMANDING OUTSIDE HELP FROM EXPERT MURDER INVESTIGATERS!!!

    • Scandalous

      Demand new provost and president


    And . . . Nothing. So not impressed Ithaca.