UMass Amherst Upgrading Security Measures in Wake of 2012 Rape on Campus

UMass says it has already implemented 60 of 87 security recommendations made by an outside consulting firm.

AMHERST, Mass. — Campus security changes are coming to the University of Massachusetts Amherst (UMass) after a gang rape of a former student in a dormitory hall.

The Daily Hampshire Gazette reports the $1.45 million project will be finished by the end of 2016. UMass has implemented 60 of the 87 security improvements that an outside consulting firm recommended after the rape that occurred in October 2012. The four rapists, who were not UMass students, were convicted and sentenced to lengthy prison sentences. One of the attackers was able to bypass residence hall security, while the other three were signed into the building by a stranger.

“The chancellor made the commitment that this was a top priority for the university,” UMass spokesman Edward Blaguszewski said. “There were clearly some issues we needed to address. There were flaws.”

Some of the security upgrades include:

  • Personal computers being installed for residence hall security staff,
  • New visitor management software as opposed to past system of guests signing in on paper,
  • Repair of door hardware deficiencies and nuisance alarms,
  • Replacement of video surveillance cameras,
  • Correction of “weakness” at fire exits,
  • Improvements to residence hall layouts in stairwells at main entrances and public restrooms.

UMass has the third-largest on-campus population in the country, according to the university, with 13,000 students in its 51 residence halls.


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