Sophomore volleyball player Sam Stack entered her assigned room in Klassen hall during athletic training camp to find an unattached prosthetic leg leaning against her bedpost and a one-legged man sleeping face down in her bed.
It was the evening of Aug. 23rd., just two weeks before the start of PLNU classes and student athletes were already moving on campus for athletic training camps. Stack’s roommate, junior volleyball player Delaney McCraney, was also asleep in the room.
“I was in my room with my teammates and ended up falling asleep with the lights on in my room at around 10:30 p.m.,” said McCraney. “I woke up when Sam came in the door.”
McCraney said she had no idea sleeping in a room completely alone with a strange man just a few feet away.
“I looked up and saw what looked to be a homeless man sleeping beside me. Our beds were in an L-shape with my head right by his. I didn’t say anything at first and just stared at him. I was literally naked with a sweatshirt on,” McCraney said.
Stack and McCraney both stayed calm and informed the man that he needed to leave. McCraney felt sympathetic toward the man throughout the incident.
“I honestly felt bad. He just wanted somewhere to sleep so it was the saddest thing having to kick him out,” McCraney said.
After reattaching his leg, the man entered a different dorm room that was unoccupied and locked himself inside. Public Safety was then called to escort the man off campus.
“Our response was fairly standard,” said Public Safety Supervisor Kaz Trypuc. “We got a call that there was a suspicious individual in a dorm room and we informed him that he needed to leave or would be arrested. He complied so we escorted him off campus where he called 911 and was transferred to the Veterans Affairs hospital by ambulance.”
Upon questioning the man, Stack found that there may have been underlying issues that cause the man to enter their room.
“The man claimed to be a 30-year-old war veteran who was having a PTSD attack,” said Stack. “So he didn’t know what was going on which seemed true.”
After the incident, the roommates said their attitudes quickly changed.
“At first it was so funny,” said McCraney. “We were all laughing. After we called Public Safety and it all became traumatic, I cried that night. I was just shocked that I was asleep when everything happened. It wasn’t a huge deal but if he was a harmful person it could have been terrible so it was a blessing he wasn’t.”
Stack said the creepiest part of the night came later on when they checked the shower to find the floor covered in dirt puddles, their shampoos removed from the shower caddies and put in a single straight line, and hair in her soap and razor.
“Could you imagine what it had been like if we had gone in the showers and found a one legged homeless looking man naked in the showers? I just can’t even imagine,” said Stack.
While the girls say that they have since recovered from the initial trauma of the incident, they are both making changes to be safer on campus including keeping doors locked and windows closed.
“Public Safety said to us that they saw him on campus,” said McCraney. “They said that they thought he might do something but that they were glad they found him. But why didn’t they kick him out if they thought he was going to do something?”
Personal conduct policies on the PLNU website specifically reference visitors to the campus, stating, “The campuses of Point Loma Nazarene University are provided primarily to accommodate the immediate university community, (i.e. students, faculty and staff). As a private, independent university, the campuses are private property. The University reserves the right to regulate admission of visitors and to require visitors to obtain a permit under controlled conditions.”
Trypuc commented on this ability of Public Safety to monitor people coming and going on campus.
“The door to the resident hall was open and we have an open campus. There was no way for us to identify who he was or that he had malicious intent,” said Trypuc. “There’s really no way to identify every person that walks on campus; we have so many access points. Maybe the person at the front of the dorm should have questioned him.”