Student Sues DSU After Campus Attack - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Reported by Michael Lopardi

Student Sues DSU After Campus Attack

Jameka Smith, above, said that knowledge about a previous assault on campus could have prevented her attack in 2005. (Photo: WBOC) Jameka Smith, above, said that knowledge about a previous assault on campus could have prevented her attack in 2005. (Photo: WBOC)
University spokesman Carlos Holmes, above, said the school stands by the way it handled the situation. (Photo: WBOC) University spokesman Carlos Holmes, above, said the school stands by the way it handled the situation. (Photo: WBOC)

05/09/2008

DOVER, Del.- A Delaware State University student is suing the school after she said she was attacked by a man in her dorm.  

The lawsuit by Jameka Smith claims the university violated federal law by not informing students that Smith's attacker had attacked another student the previous day. Smith said that knowledge about the previous assault could have prevented her attack.  

The school is required to make timely reports to the campus community on crimes considered to be a threat to other students and employees under the Jeanne Cleary Act, lawyer Ron Poliquin said. Poliquin is representing Smith in the case.  

Maurice Drew got unauthorized access into Smith's dorm on Oct. 16, 2005, and assaulted her, according to the lawsuit. The day before, Drew assaulted another female student on campus, Poliquin said. Smith said she had never seen or met Drew until the attack. She said she thinks he used another student's identification card to enter the building.  

DSU spokesman Carlos Holmes said the university stands by the way it handled the situation.

"At all times, university police acted appropriately with the complete regard for the safety of our students," Holmes said. He would not say if the university made any attempt to notify students and faculty of the assaults.

Smith said she had to take several weeks off of school to recover. She said she still has physical and emotional scars from the assault.  

"I look in the mirror sometimes and I notice what happened to me. It makes me think back to what happened," Smith said. "I have nightmares every once in a while."  

The trial is scheduled to begin Nov. 10. Smith is seeking roughly $1 million in damages.

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