Students still shaken by camera in Koonce

Morgan Day

Koonce Hall residents said it was like something out of a movie – not something that should’ve happened at Kent State.

“This is supposed to be like our house,” said Katie Carson, freshman speech pathology major and Koonce resident, about the camera found Dec. 4 in a Koonce Hall women’s bathroom.

Sophomore exploratory major Brittani Johnson found the small video camera, which was hidden in an empty soap dispenser and angled to face the middle of the bathroom, in front of a shower.

Residents said they were stunned that something so invasive actually happened to them. But as the initial shock slowly fades, one question is on everyone’s mind: Could it happen again?

Gina Gastaldo, freshman business major and Koonce resident, said she fears similar incidents might occur in the future.

“You feel so safe, and then something like that happens,” she said.

Gastaldo said she heard about the incident from her parents, who live about an hour away from Kent. They called her after seeing it on the news.

“I didn’t believe it, but then more and more people found out,” she said. “It was just a scary thing.”

Carson and fellow ninth-floor resident Shereen Sharabi said the women in Koonce haven’t forgotten about the incident yet. Both students now inspect the bathroom before undressing and take special notice of the soap dispensers.

“It made me realize that there are actually creeps in the world, like my mom always told me,” said Sharabi, freshman justice studies major.

Carl Sweigert, Kent State police detective, could not comment because the case is not closed, but said the department is “tying up loose ends” and hopes to solve it very soon.

But neither Carson nor Sharabi believes anyone will be charged in the case, which the police department considered voyeurism.

“Unless some kid brags about a Web site, they’ll never solve it,” Sharabi said.

Contact safety reporter Morgan Day at [email protected].