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Friday, Apr. 29, 2016

DePauw reacts to arrest of teen on campus

Tuesday, March 6, 2007

Emergency personnel work on extricating the occupants in a two-vehicle collision Monday on U.S. 231 near Somerset Church.
DePauw University officials may take disciplinary action against a student for inviting a friend to campus who was subsequently arrested for entering dorm rooms of female students where he allegedly asked them for sex.

Campus and city police arrested 18-year-old Marvin G. DeBerry Jr., Chicago, on Sunday after witnesses said he entered the dorm rooms of several female students and sought to get in bed with them.

"The subject spoke to her (student) and stated that he 'could make your wildest dreams come true,'" according to a police report by DePauw Officer Rick Keller.

The suspect appeared in another student's room where he sat on the edge of her bed and said, "I want you," according to the police report.

When confronted in the hallway of a university building, DeBerry told Keller that he was spending the night with his friend, a student at the university, but denied unlawful entry of the female students' rooms. DeBerry told Keller he was staying in the room of student Ross Williams, according to the police report.

DePauw Public Safety Director Doug Cox told the BannerGraphic Tuesday that the university could seek disciplinary action against the student for alleged violation of the university's code of conduct relating to hosting guests on campus.

According to the policy, "students are responsible for the behavior of their guests. Because the action of guests also impacts members of the DePauw community, students assume responsibility for those they host in the community."

Dorian Shager, chairman of DePauw's Community Standards Committee, said students who are shown to be in violation of the conduct code face disciplinary action by the university.

If the student admits to the charge, he or she is promptly disciplined or sanctioned, in accordance with the student handbook. If the student denies the charge, a trial of sorts will be conducted by the university to determine the level of guilt or innocence, Shager explained.

According to the student handbook, the most severe sanctions for students include suspension or expulsion from the university. There are also lesser degrees of sanctions, to include probation or deferred suspension, fines, restitution, loss of privileges and living unit expulsions.

Shager declined to talk about the specific case concerning the student, referring to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).

Meanwhile, DeBerry is being held in the Putnam County Jail on a $50,000 bond awaiting a May 2 pre-trial hearing, scheduled for 8:30 a.m. in Putnam Superior Court.

DeBerry appeared before Judge Robert Lowe Monday afternoon where he pleaded not guilty to three charges of residential entry, a class D felony, each one carrying a possible three years in prison and a $10,000 fine.

DeBerry told the judge he is a high school student from Chicago and is a member of a rap group that performed for students at a so-called "Re-Up Concert," conducted Saturday evening on campus.

Attorney Sid Tongret, a deputy prosecutor for Putnam County, told the judge that five additional charges of residential entry, representing five additional victims, would be filed against DeBerry on Tuesday.

Public Safety Director Cox said the female students were not physically touched by the suspect.

He applauded the students for promptly reporting the incident to police and for the officer for his efforts.

"Obviously someone coming into your room is alarming, but these students had the presence of mind to get a good description of this guy," Cox said. "Our students take seriously their personal safety and we do, too."

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