Com­mu­nity at­tends fo­rum af­ter as­sault

Stu­dent: ‘We should all come to­gether’

Daily Local News (West Chester, PA) - - FRONT PAGE - By Linda Stein lstein@21st-cen­tu­ry­media.com @lstein­re­porter on Twit­ter

RADNOR >> More than 100 Vil­lanova Univer­sity fac­ulty and staff at­tended a fo­rum Thurs­day evening to dis­cuss a re­ported in­ci­dent in the SEPTA tun­nel near cam­pus.

Radnor po­lice are in­ves­ti­gat­ing a claim that a woman was at­tacked by sup­port­ers of Pres­i­den­t­elect Don­ald Trump on Nov. 10.

Ac­cord­ing to cam­pus of­fi­cials, they re­ceived a re­port that a woman was walk­ing through the SEPTA tun­nel be­tween the west cam­pus and the main cam­pus when she was ap­proached by a group of white men. The men were said to be run­ning to­ward her yelling “Trump.” One of the men knocked into her and caused her to fall to the ground. Her head then struck the ground, ac­cord­ing to the re­port.

Radnor po­lice Lt. Andy Block said on Fri­day that po­lice con­tinue to in­ves­ti­gate the in­ci­dent but no arrests have been made.

“I’m wor­ried,” said Noelle Ed­wards, 21, a se­nior from Ge­or­gia who was wait­ing to go into the fo­rum, which was closed to the press. “I’m a lit­tle bit scared (by) the out­right na­ture of how peo­ple are act­ing. It hap­pened so close to home. It’s be­come an ev­ery­day oc­cur­rence now. It’s a lit­tle bit un­com­fort­able how bold peo­ple are, not only was he elected pres­i­dent, they’re tak­ing his ac­tions as their

own.”

Mau­rice Mitchell, 22, a se­nior from Philadel­phia, said about the in­ci­dent, “I don’t like it. I’m cu­ri­ous to learn if the per­sons in­volved will be found... What will hap­pen? It’s been hap­pen­ing since day one af­ter the elec­tion. It’s dis­heart­en­ing. They say we live in one na­tion in­di­vis­i­ble (but) we seem so di­vided on two can­di­dates, two very dif­fer­ent plat­forms. I only hope Trump sees both pop­u­la­tions and fos­ters unity be­tween the two.”

“It’s a tragedy,” said Max Mancini, 22, a se­nior from Phoenixville. “I hope it’s the small, few on cam­pus. I hope they’ll get their act to­gether.”

Rucha De­sai, 18, a fresh­man from New York, was not go­ing to the fo­rum. How­ever, she said, the in­ci­dent in the tun­nel was “very con­cern­ing.”

Two stu­dents work­ing on grad­u­ate de­grees in theater were also dis­turbed by the re­ported tun­nel in­ci­dent, which they learned about from one of their pro­fes­sors.

Heather Le­mos, of Florida, said she went into the tun­nel this week and saw that some­one had writ­ten in large let­ters in chalk: “Your life mat­ters.”

“It’s nice some­body took the time to do that,” she said. “They’re try­ing to be an in­clu­sive cam­pus.” The theater stu­dents are “em­pathiz­ers” so it’s hard for them to hear about some­thing like this, she said.

Rachel Abra­ham, 28, of Yard­ley, was sur­prised to learn about the in­ci­dent in class.

“It was re­ally sad,” Abra­ham said. “It made (her pro­fes­sor) emo­tional. Stu­dents, fac­ulty, they shouldn’t be per­se­cuted be­cause of how the look.”

Le­mos then added, “We should all come to­gether.”

Mean­while, Trump, in a re­cent in­ter­view on “60 Min­utes” was asked about re­ports of his sup­port­ers ha­rass­ing mi­nori­ties. He said, “I’ll say it right to the cam­era. Stop it.”

Around the coun­try, there have also been re­ports of vi­o­lent at­tacks on Trump sup­port­ers in the wake of the elec­tion.

PETE BANNAN — DIG­I­TAL FIRST ME­DIA

Shown is the en­trance to the Vil­lanova Univer­sty cam­pus in Radnor.

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