Two recent acts of violence near the campus, on October 31st and November 4th, have been reported. Although only the Lewiston Police Department can provide specific details regarding these crimes, Thomas Carey, the Director of Bates College Security and Campus Safety, has valuable insights to share with the Student.
Although Carey emphasized that no incidents occurred on the Bates campus and that no one from Bates was involved, he nonetheless informed all Bates faculty, staff, and students about the incidents via email. In the words of Tom Carey, “awareness is an important component of safety and security.”
On the evening of October 31st, two individuals, who knew each other, were involved in a disagreement that ended in a stabbing. The incident occurred at 29 Vale Street, which was the victim’s residence. The only other fact we know is that “the victim, assailant and witnesses to this incident have refused to cooperate in the police investigation.”
On November 4th at 10 am, an incident, once again, occurred in which the victims knew each other. This time the incident ended in a shooting; however, “there was no lockdown or active shooter situation.” The police are still looking for the shooter because shortly after the incident, “the perpetrator fled the area.” In discussing with Carey, he explained that “the consistent theme is that these incidents are not random and the individuals involved know each other.”
Carey pointed out, “Lewiston is by any measure much safer than other Maine and New England cities,” (according to Uniform Crime Reports provided by the FBI). However, he recognizes that crimes can occur anywhere and that “if you are in downtown Lewiston and not going to a restaurant or bar, then you should reconsider the need to be down there.”
Carey then identified some “common sense actions we should all employ in our daily lives to keep ourselves safe. This advice includes: securing your property and person, knowing where you are going, having a plan, letting others know where you are going, locking your vehicle, parking in a lit area, not leaving items of value in plain view, and making sure you know locations of exits and entrances, no matter where you are.
Although these two incidents did not directly affect or involve anyone from Bates, and while Lewiston remains a very safe community, Carey cautions you to “follow your intuition” because “often times if something doesn’t feel right, you’ll know it.”