College at Brockport Students 'Take Back the Night'
Almost a month after a College at Brockport student was murdered inside her dorm room, student and faculty continue to raise awareness on domestic violence. Students took part in a Take Back the Night rally Tuesday.
On a rainy evening at The College of Brockport, student marched through campus and into the village to take a stand against domestic violence.
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Take Back the Night is an international effort that the College at Brockport has taken part in since 1988, but this year, when people think of victims of domestic violence, Alexandra Kogut’s face comes to mind.
The 18-year-old Kogut was brutally murdered inside her freshman dorm room on campus on September 29th. Her boyfriend is charged with her murder.
During the rally, students shared stories of survival, and said they are fighting back against the very ideas that foster violence in the first place.
“We don’t need men to protect us, but if they’re going to be there, if they want to help, march beside us. Help us not be afraid to not walk to our cars at night. Help us not be afraid to go to the bars at night,” said Adriana Crosby, Student Social Work Organization. “Yes, we’re going to dress up and yes, we’re going to go to the bars, but that doesn’t give them the right to say, hey, well you’re dressing up like this, obviously you want us to take advantage of us, we don’t.
“We’re going through the healing and grieving process. These are young people that have to move on with their lives, but we’re never ever going to forget Alex Kogut,” said John Halstead, College at Brockport president.
Court paperwork detailing the crime alleges Kogut’s boyfriend, Clayton Whittemore, beat Kogut to death with his fists and a curling iron. Those same documents detail an alleged conversation with a jail deputy where he admitted to killing his girlfriend. Whittemore is charged with second degree murder.
A lot of men attended Tuesday night’s rally, and some spoke. Most of the speakers were fellow students. Halstead says the campus community is trying to heal, and now the main message on campus is to respect each other, and protect each other.