A 55-year-old Bath man, arrested after allegedly breaking into a woman’s home and exposing himself, has been identified as a person of interest in the ongoing investigation into the reported sexual assault at Bowdoin last month, according to an article in the Bangor Daily News. 

Stephen McIntire was convicted of gross sexual assault in 1997. He was also convicted in 2015 for failing to comply with the sex offender registry and for violating “peeping tom” laws at the Hyde School in Bath.

McIntire attended the support group for sex offenders that was held, until recently, at the First Parish Church just off the College’s campus. The group was told that they could no longer meet there after the College voiced concerns to the church following the reported sexual assault.

The police are still looking into other persons of interest as part of their ongoing investigation according to Brunswick Police Department Commander Mark Waltz. 

“The Office of Safety and Security is continuing to assist the Brunswick Police by sharing information that we have that may be helpful to the investigation,” said Director of Safety Security Randy Nichols in an email to the Orient. “Often investigative leads come to the attention of Security, and that information is immediately passed on to the police. We communicate with the police continually and we receive regular briefings and updates from them.”

On Tuesday, Bowdoin Student Government (BSG) announced that the Office of Safety and Security, Student Activities, the Office of Gender Violence Prevention and Education and the Women’s Resource Center had organized three free self defense classes, to be held today and Saturday. According to the email from BSG President Danny Mejia-Cruz ’16, the classes will be held again next semester if there is enough interest. 

According to Nichols, the increased security and police controls, extended shuttle hours and modified student parking rules are continuing. 

Safety concerns seemed to have affected some of the 131 students who will be returning to campus for the spring semester after studying away. Twelve returning students will be living off-campus with the rest planning to live in on campus housing. Vice President for Communications and Public Affairs Scott Hood said that this is consistent with the ratio of students living on and off campus this fall. 

Eva Sibinga ’17 is currently in Rome and is planning on living at an off campus residence on Spring Street when she returns next semester. Although she is aware of the recent security concerns, she is not planning on changing her living arrangements.

“Honestly it didn’t even cross my mind to change my housing plans,” said Sibinga in a message to the Orient. “I can’t feel the campus changing nearly as acutely when I am not on it.”

She says that she is currently on guard when she is walking around the streets of Rome, something she never felt she had to do while at Bowdoin. 

Victoria Pitaktong ’17 is abroad in Bejing and, while not changing her plans, is concerned about housing.

“I couldn’t change my plan now so I [have to] go with it. I am just worried because my house is very far away and it is a long walk in the dark,” Pitaktong said in a message to the Orient. “I feel like if [an incident like the sexual assault] can still happen [in college housing], I don’t feel comfortable living off campus anymore. So it’s just scary.”

Danny Mejia ’17, who is abroad in India, will be living in an off-campus house at 41 Harpswell next semester.

“[Recent security concerns have] had zero effect on where I’ve chosen to live—mainly because we had chosen [41 Harpswell] before the security concerns arose,” Mejia said in a message to the Orient. “I was shocked, saddened [to hear the same problems of gender discrimination surrounding me in India are existing in Brunswick]. But as a male, I personally do not have concerns for living off-campus [especially because of 41 Harpswell’s proximity to campus].”

While no students have asked for a change in residence from off-campus to on-campus in light of recent security concerns, the College will continue to be aware. 

“At this point, we don’t know of any students asking to change their off-campus housing plans to move back on campus. This includes those students who are currently studying away and who will be returning for the spring semester,” said Hood in an email to the Orient. “Of course, this could change and it is something we will continue to keep an eye on.”