Original Article

Original Article

By Brittany Wilson, The Whetstone

The results of an investigation into an incident where students accused a Wesley College security guard of acting unprofessionally will not be released.

Director of Safety and Security Walt Beaupre said he would not release the results of the investigation because he “can’t discuss personnel issues.”

On Oct. 25, Wesley security responded to a call at 3 a.m., after a man was found lying on the pavement, drunk and unconscious, outside of Roe Hall.  The man woke up in a panic and started swinging his fists, striking the security guard who woke him in the face.

Eyewitness Felix Ortiz, a senior, said that is when the security guard returned the favor, punching the student in the face, causing him to hit his head on the pavement.

“He was supposed to be the professional in that situation, he should have been the smarter individual,” Ortiz said. “Instead he reacted unprofessionally and could have knocked the student back out or caused a more serious injury.”

Beaupre said he based his investigation on eyewitness accounts.

“Students and staff were interviewed and provided written statements,” he said.

Ortiz said he was never contacted for his account of what happened.

“There was no outreach to me from security or the administration whatsoever,” he said.  “I think if you want to find out what really happened, all parties involved need to be interviewed so you can get all the facts.  I was there, I saw it all.”

Eyewitness Brandon Smith, a junior, said he was interviewed by security, but believes the investigation should have been taken more seriously.

“As they find out what happened, they should take some type of action to make sure it doesn’t happen again and [ensure] the officer understands how to handle delicate situations,” he said.

Beaupre said the security guard, whose name was not released, followed protocol.

“Security officers, like anyone else, have the right to defend themselves by using minimum force to detain and/or overcome any resistance offered,” he said.

Sophomore Elijah Tinson, an eyewitness who was interviewed by security, told the Whetstone that the officers did their job. “I think they handled it the right way,” he said.

Ortiz said self-defense was unnecessary because the guard was not in danger.

“The student was intoxicated—his reflexes were slow and he was already subdued,” he said.  “The guard’s conduct was too harsh for the situation at hand.  There were much better ways it could have been handled.”

Smith said the student did not deserve to be punched, especially by the man who was supposed to be helping him.

“If that type of force was necessary then it would not have been an issue,” he said. “The officer allowed his anger and pride to get in the way which is unprofessional.”

Smith said he believes the guard should be reprimanded.

“I believe he should have some small punishment like a small break and a reminder of his job,” he said.

Ortiz said security officers should be taught how to properly handle similar situations.

“They need better training on what the proper procedure is,” he said.  “They should know how to handle those kind of situations in the future.”