No Truth to Instagram Rumors

Melina Quispe and Isaiah Parmalee, Contributing Writers

In a recent interview with Ronald Hurley, associate vice president of Public Safety, rumors about a sex trafficker on campus last semester are false.  There were posts being shared on Instagram by students concerned about safety. The situation increased after Public Safety released a statement to staff and students that the rumors were being investigated. 

Hurley said during his years at the university, there were no issues surrounding sex trafficking on campus. “I don’t think we’ve ever collected a legitimate report saying that there was sex trafficking going on campus. There may have been questions asked but to my recollection there have been no reports of any sex trafficking,” Hurley said. “We’ve had people raise the question, call us asking, ‘Hey is it true?’ But, maybe with the exception of that one report that we had just recently. I would think that’s it.” 

In response to the Instagram posts in the fall semester, Hurley said no report was filed and rumors circulated just because of social media. 

“We do everything we can to investigate and to make sure that this is not legitimate. If it is legitimate then we act appropriately. That was not the case. Anybody can post anything on Instagram so we don’t take that as fact. What we do is take the information and then we do our best to track it down. Working with partners in other colleges, universities, and the Department of Homeland Security. We went to the FBI, and we verified with them and they said ‘No this isn’t legit.’”

To help make sure students and staff are safe on campus, the school has created an app– “NJCURave Guardian Safety App.” The app is designed for students to report if they’re being followed at night or in harm’s way. There is also the Knight Rider Safe Ride Service that operates Monday through Sunday from 5 pm to 1 am. They provide a safe form of transportation to the Light Rail, Route 440( Hudson Mall, ACME supermarket, Gerrity Athletic Complex) ,and Rite Aid on Danforth Ave. If students still feel unsafe, Public Safety will drive to a destination close to home or campus.  

To stay safe and out of reach from sex traffickers here are 10 tips. 

  • Do not walk alone late at night 
  • Do not allow technology to make you unaware of your surroundings
  • Use locks
  • Carry emergency cash
  • Locate the emergency system around campus
  • Know your way around campus
  • Never stay at a party when your friend leaves 
  • Avoid being intoxicated and losing control
  • Always have emergency contacts on you or on your device
  • Consider carrying pepper spray or a whistle 

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