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More details emerge about alleged sexual assault at Notre Dame

More details have emerged about an alleged sexual assault of a student at Notre Dame of Maryland University on Oct. 22.

The 19-year-old student said she was walking back to her room on campus from a library that Notre Dame and next-door Loyola University Maryland share, when she heard footsteps behind her, according to Baltimore City police spokesman Det. Jeremy Silbert.

The woman said she was grabbed from behind by a man armed with an edged weapon, possibly a knife, and sexually assaulted, Silbert said.

Silbert said the woman reported that she was assaulted "approximately" at 3 a.m. The Loyola-Notre Dame Library closes for the night at 2 a.m.

The woman later went to an undisclosed hospital downtown, which called police at 11:15 p.m. that night to report the incident, Silbert said.

Both Notre Dame and Loyola University Maryland reported the incident to their campus communities through email alerts on Tuesday, Oct. 23. Loyola police said the incident took place along the pathway from the library toward Notre Dame's Knott Science Center on the southeast side of its campus.

According to Baltimore City and Loyola police, the suspect is a white male in his 40s, approximately 5-feet, 10-inches tall, with a medium build, short hair and possibly facial hair, and was wearing dark clothes.

The Baltimore Police Department is investigating the incident, and both Notre Dame and Loyola are supporting the investigation, Loyola police said.

Notre Dame officials wrote in the email to students and faculty after the incident, "We assure you that your safety is our top priority. The Office of Public Safety is responding with additional campus patrols."

Loyola police will increase their patrols and "focus additional closed-circuit television assets on this area," in the wake of the incident, according to Loyola's statement to its campus community.

Loyola is urging students to walk in groups, use the campus shuttle system, and, if shuttles have stopped for the night, to call campus police for an escort or ride.

Notre Dame also offers a campus escort service after dark, and students are made aware of it during orientation, spokeswoman Nancy Carr said. She said students can call "0" to get an escort.

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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