By Latricia Wilson
Toxicology report pending for college student found dead in University of Chicago dorm room
A toxicology report is pending for a University of Chicago student found dead on Feb. 15 in a dorm room, according to WebPro news.
Nicholas Brastine Barnes, who was a junior and Germanic Studies Major, passed away at least a week before his body was discovered, according to officials.
Karen Warren Coleman, vice president for Campus Life and Student Services at U of C, said in a letter to the U of C campus community, “Our thoughts are with Nicholas’ family and friends and all who are touched by this loss. Nicholas was an excellent student, admired by faculty and peers alike.”
In the letter, Coleman also stated that Nicholas’ family is planning a funeral in Pittsburgh, where he grew up. She said there will also be a campus memorial.
Catherine Vodrey, along with Barnes’ family members, has launched a memorial crowdfunding page in order to raise money to honor his memory.
“Our goal is to establish the Nicholas Brastins Barnes Memorial Prize at Shady Side Academy, which was Nick’s alma mater,” Coleman said in an email statement.
“The significance of it is just to remember the kind of wonderful, intellectually, restless, endlessly curious student Nick was,” she said of the U of C student who “was like a second son” to her.
Former Columbia College student ‘who loved music’ fall ruled a suicide
Paul R. LaRochelle III, from Auburn, Mass., a former student of Columbia College Chicago, committed suicide on Feb. 24, Chicago Sun Times Media wire reported.
The Cook County Medical Examiner’s office autopsy on March 3 ruled LaRochelle’s fatal fall in the Water Tower Place in Streeterville a suicide.
About 9 p.m., LaRochelle “fell or jumped” to the ground floor from the seventh floor of the shopping center, Police News Affairs Officer Amina Greer said.
According to a Legacy.com obiturary, LaRochelle “loved pop culture and music, especially that of Britney Spears” and “enjoyed singing, dancing and spending time with friends.”
One of his best friends, Jenn Zannotti, said LaRochelle’s love for music made her love music more than she already did.
“He and I spent hours watching YouTube videos, signing and dancing to our favorite songs,” she said.
LaRochelle’s sister Kim O’Brien said she and her brother enjoyed hanging out with each other.
“My brother Paul, or P3 as I called him, were best friends,” she said. “We loved to going to the beach.”
“We also enjoyed spending countless hours talking and listening to music by our parents’ pool side,” she said.
One of LaRochelle’s best friends Erin Kane said she lost a part of herself when she lost LaRochelle.
According to Kane, she and LaRochelle stuck together during their college days.
“We had signed up for all the same classes and explored our new campus together day in and day out, hand-in-hand with huge smiles on our faces,” Kane said.
Another one of LaRochelle’s best friends, Kerri Sullivan said she and LaRochelle were inseparable since second grade.
“He was a bright soul, eager to learn and grow, to experience all that life had to offer,” Sullivan said. “And for the 27 years that he was with us, that’s exactly what he did.”
Alleged sexual assault occurred at Columbia College Chicago According to the Columbia College Office of Campus Safety, an alleged sexual assault occurred on March 2.
According to a Columbia College Campus Safety and Security report, the alleged sexual assault occurred on the far south side of Chicago involving suspects believed to not be affiliated with the college. The circumstances of this assault suggest the involvement of a date rape drug, such as rohypnol, GHB or ketamine.
Date rape drugs cause temporary loss of memory or inhibition, surreptitiously given to someone in order to facilitate sexual abuse.
They can come in powder, liquid and pill forms, and are most often placed in a person’s drink.
Common side effects of date rape drugs are a feeling of drowsiness, confusion, dizziness and nausea, strange feelings after drinking a small amount, blackouts and a lack of coordination.
These side effects reduce a person’s ability to protect themselves from physical or sexual assault. Former Wheaton College Professor sentenced to prison for child porn
Former Wheaton College professor Donald Ratcliff was charged with two counts of aggravated child pornography on March 1, according to a Wheaton College statement.
The statement says that the DuPage County State’s Attorney Office informed the college that Ratcliff was scheduled for a court hearing on March 8, and his employment at Wheaton was terminated on March 14.
According to Chicago CBS, Carol Stream police arrested him in March 2012 after an investigation traced Internet files containing child pornography to computers in his home.
The investigation revealed that Ratcliff had between 500 and 1,000 pornographic images of children.
“Wheaton College is a Christian liberal arts college with shared moral commitments and expectations for all members of our community,” the Wheaton College statement said.
“Our Community Covenant states, in part, ‘Scripture condemns … sexual immorality, such as the use of pornography.’ Child pornography, by its very nature, always involves victimization of the most vulnerable, and thus is particularly abhorrent.”
Two individuals found drinking alcohol in a DePaul University classroom
According to the DePaul University Crime Prevention Office, on March 4, suspicious activity was reported in the Lewis Center at the Loop campus.
Two individuals were found consuming alcohol in a classroom. The offenders fled the scene.
Panel decides UCPD too harsh on South Side Trauma Center protestors
A year after 40 protesters gained access to the lobby of the then-unopened Center for Care and Discovery, leading to the arrest of four people, the Ad Hoc Committee on Protest and Dissent released their findings about the University of Chicago Police Department handling of the protestors.
On January 24, 2013 in the early afternoon, protesters gained access to the lobby of the CCD by purchasing a limited number of tickets to a sanctioned tour sponsored by the Chicago Architecture Foundation, according to the Final Report of Investigation for the University of Chicago, released in May 2013.
“Protesters arrived at the CCD by bus. They intended to protest the lack of a level one trauma center on the South Side of Chicago,” the report stated.
“The committee recommended that in future protests the police handle the activity only minimally and include allocating additional resources for the dean-on-call program,” the Hyde Park Herald reported. “It also advised that the decision to contact UCPD during demonstrations should be made by high-ranking university officials, if at all.”