No arrests have been made in the sexual assault case that occurred on campus in October 2009, but police currently have a suspect for the victim to identify, a police official said.
Police Sgt. Deven Pitt said Fort Worth police found a male who matched the description of the suspect, but the victim had not identified him because she went back home to Peru.
“The problem is that the victim is no longer in the country, so it’s hard to stay in contact with her and get her to view different photo spreads and things of that nature to have her positively identify a suspect for us,” Pitt said.
Pitt said they are waiting for a response from the victim before moving forward with the investigation. Pitt added that before leaving the country, the victim cooperated with police by looking at pictures of potential suspects.
A flier was released by Fort Worth police the day after the attack with a police sketch of the suspect and brief description of the attack. According to the flier, the 18-year-old female was walking to the Mary Couts Burnett Library from her dorm on October 13, 2009 around 9 p.m. when the male suspect grabbed her, threatened her with a knife, and dragged her into a dark area before sexually assaulting her with an object. The suspect fled on foot south on University Drive, according to the flier.
According to the police sketch, the male was described as a 6-foot tall, white male in his early 20s with blond hair and a mole on his right cheek.
Junior early childhood education major Courtney Bailey said she has taken some precautions since learning of the sexual assault.
“I don’t ever really walk around by myself anymore especially at night,” Bailey said. “If I do, I make sure I’m like constantly checking my surroundings and stuff like that.”
Junior Pi Beta Phi President Caroline Dixon said she hoped participating in the TAKE self-defense classes offered on campus would help students avoid similar situations.
Dixon said TAKE was started when Alexandra Kemp, a Pi Beta Phi member at Kansas State, was murdered while working at her community pool. Dixon said Kemp’s parents thought their daughter might have survived the attack if she had known basic self-defense.
“It’s especially important since we’ve had incidents like that in the past that the women at TCU are prepared to handle any kind of situation,” Dixon said.
Pitt said the suspect from the 2009 sexual assault may have used additional weapons to force the female to comply.
“According to her report, he hit her in the head with something hard, which dazed her,” Pitt said. “And that’s the way he was able to drag her to a dark area. She said she’s not exactly sure where.”
Bailey said the most important thing TCU Police could do to prevent another incident like this is to increase their presence on campus.
“If they could just have more people around at night,” Bailey said. “Because sometimes if you’re walking back from the library at night by yourself, it’s really creepy outside.”
According to a previous Skiff article, TCU Police increased night security on campus. Lt. Abad Ramiro said they would maintain the extra security as long as university officials felt that it was necessary, according to the article. Sgt. Kelly Ham confirmed in an e-mail that the added night security has been in effect since the attack.
Emergency Contact Information
Froggie 5-O operating 8 p.m.- 1 a.m.: 817-257-7777
TCU Police Emergency: 817-257-7777
TCU Police Non-Emergency: 817-257-7930
Fort Worth Police Non-Emergency: 817-335-4222
Extended interview with Sgt. Deven Pitt