Intruder evades NYU dorm security at Alumni Hall, Coral Tower

The New York City Police Department responded to reports of an intruder in the Alumni Hall and Coral Tower residence halls.

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Samson Tu

File photo: Coral Tower is located at the north-east corner of the intersection between East 14th Street and Third Avenue.

Lauren Ashe, Deputy News Editor

A man unaffiliated with NYU dodged security and entered Alumni Hall and Coral Tower on Tuesday, Nov. 1. The unidentified perpetrator was removed from Alumni Hall by Campus Safety officers. The officers then reported the incident to the New York City Police Department at around 9 p.m. on Tuesday. 

Later that night, police were called to Coral Tower at around 11 p.m. They removed the same intruder from the residence hall before transporting him to the hospital. No police report was filed.

A Coral Tower resident, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said that they were not taken seriously when they told NYU Campus Safety officers they may have come in contact with the intruder inside the building.

“He was like ‘Well, we can’t really do anything,’” the resident said. “Then he said, ‘This is New York — you can get harassed, and this is the reality of living here.’” 

The resident said that the officers told them they could not confirm that the person that the student had seen was the intruder. They added that they were discouraged from reporting the incident to the NYPD by a Campus Safety officer, who said the police would not respond because the student was not harmed. 

“With both officers, it was just more of a condescending type of attitude,” the resident said. “I should be able to come to them, and I don’t think that I should be met with this type of response.”

Neither residence hall informed its residents until Nov. 3, two days after the incident had taken place. Jade Wicker, an Alumni Hall resident, said she believes that students should be notified about similar incidents as soon as they occur.

I already had in mind that the safety in the buildings is lacking, ” Wicker said. “I’ve felt that way since my freshman year. This just reconfirms that sense, that it’s not super safe here.”

Alumni Hall administrators sent an email to residents, which said that the intruder entered the residence hall and accessed office spaces in the building. After campus security found the perpetrator in the residence hall, he was escorted out.

Staff at Coral Tower also informed residents that the intruder entered the residence hall and common spaces in the building. Bret Beaufeaux, the residence hall director at Coral Tower, told residents that the intruder was the same man who had trespassed on Alumni Hall.

“NYU students have a right to feel safe in the residence halls they call home, so we find the news of the intruder accessing Alumni Hall and Coral Tower particularly troubling,” university spokesperson Shonna Keogan told WSN. “We are conducting a thorough review of exactly how these events happened in order to take appropriate steps to prevent anything like it from recurring.”

The intruder was described as a “Black male, 5’5, with dark shoes” in NYU’s incident report, according to Keogan.

Coral Tower residents have been instructed to keep their doors locked and contact Campus Safety if they witness any unusual activity.

Last semester, an intruder entered Rubin Hall — an NYU residence hall at 35 Fifth Avenue  — on at least three occasions. He stayed in the residence hall’s lounges overnight twice between April 6 and April 10, according to several residents. The intruder claimed that he was a graduate student and came in contact with several students. He also followed several female students as they exited the dormitory. Campus Safety later apologized to residents about their handling of that incident, and Fountain Walker, the head of Campus Safety, said that the department fell short in its response.

Contact Lauren Ashe at [email protected]