Maryville College student says she was assaulted on campus

Maryville College student says she was assaulted in campus bathroom

The student told officers she was assaulted in the Clayton Center for the Arts building. The student told officers she was assaulted in the Clayton Center for the Arts building.

6 News Reporter

MARYVILLE (WATE) - Maryville police are investigating after a Maryville College student said she was assaulted in a campus restroom.

Students were alerted to the alleged assault by the college. Officials told 6 News the incident happened Thursday evening inside the Clayton Center for the Arts building. Investigators describing it as an "assault with sexual overtones."

An email was sent Monday to students, faculty, and staff with the subject line reading "Assault - Sexual Battery on Campus."

"Since it's such a small, close-knit community, I didn't think anything bad would ever happen. So it really did shock me," said Sophomore Rosa Longoria.

A student sent 6 News a copy of the email, which states a female student claimed she was assaulted Thursday evening in the first floor women's bathroom in the Clayton Center during the intermission of a concert.

The email says the two men involved in the assault, who were not students at the college, were known by the victim and she wasn't hurt.

"Because we're an open campus, I guess we're more aware of the things that could happen," added sophomore Julie Bautista.

Maryville College Director of Campus Safety and Security Jack Piepenbring, released this statement:

"The safety and security of our students, faculty, staff, and campus visitors is paramount and allegations of crime are taken very seriously. We have a staff of uniformed security officers who are on duty and patrol the campus 24-7."

"I've been on this campus for four years now and I have always felt really safe. I've walked around at midnight before and never felt unsafe," said senior Hannah Fry.

The college is now reminding students to be safe and always be aware of their surroundings and who is close by.

"I'm not more cautious or less cautious. It's just made me aware this stuff still happens," added Longoria.

Investigators say at this point they are still working through the details and evidence. Anyone with information about this incident is asked to call campus security at (865) 981-8112.

According to Maryville College's annual Safety and Security Report, there were no sexual offenses reported in 2007 and 2011. In 2008 and 2012 there was one. Two incidents were reported in 2010. In 2009, three sexual offenses were reported on campus.

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