FITCHBURG — Following a concerning report of a sexual assault in the campus library, Fitchburg State University has escalated police patrols to ensure student safety, according to an announcement from University President Richard Lapidus on Monday.
Describing the incident as “deeply troubling,” President Lapidus confirmed a robust investigation is currently underway. “Our University Police are collaborating closely with other public safety bodies on this matter,” Lapidus said. While certain details remain confidential to protect the investigation’s integrity, he reassured the public that all possible avenues are being explored. He also commended the student for reporting the incident, ensuring the individual’s well-being is being addressed.
The assault reportedly took place between 10:30 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. on last Wednesday. The student described her attacker as a slender male around 19 years of age, measuring about 5-foot-5-inches tall, and speaking with a distinctive accent she couldn’t recognize. The male allegedly initiated a conversation with her in the library before the sexual assault occurred.
Further reports have emerged of other female students being approached by a male with a similar description in various campus locations, heightening concerns.
In response to growing apprehensions, Lapidus emphasized the rarity of such incidents, referencing the school’s annual security documentation.
“We aim to bolster the confidence of our campus community by increasing police visibility in the foreseeable future. I urge everyone to remain cautious and observant,” Lapidus stated.
He further pointed to resources available on the University Police website for safety measures, both on and off campus.
Collaborative efforts with campus partners, including Counseling Services, are in progress to provide additional support and information during this period.