Meeting discusses attacks

By Mark McGowan

Although it was demanded earlier, the attendance of three NIU officials was not required at Tuesday night’s mass meeting to discuss recent violent attacks on the NIU campus.

Attendance at the meeting was demanded of NIU president John La Tourette, Judicial Officer Larry Bolles and Associate Vice President of Student Affairs Barbara Henley.

Black Student Union President Chris O’Banner said the demanded attendance was to question the officials so they could explain “a lack of university and city officials to pursue” the attacks.

On Tuesday, O’Banner said some of the demands stated last week had been fulfilled over the weekend. The officials were then notified their attendance was welcome but not necessary.

The demands included arrest of the suspects, immediate expulsion of those involved and a more “active” investigation. It is unclear which or how many of the demands were met.

By softening their tone on the demanded attendance, the BSU and B.R.O.T.H.E.R.S. did not back down from the issue, and the coalition is still intact, O’Banner said. He said the meeting was called as a response to recent violence on the campus and in the DeKalb area.

The meeting was a coalition of the Feminist Front, Freedom Now, the BSU and B.R.O.T.H.E.R.S.

The members of the BSU and B.R.O.T.H.E.R.S. were at the meeting to answer any questions, but did not appear to officially speak.

O’Banner said the coalition “just happened” because many of the members of the groups hold membership in one of the other four groups.

Both Bolles and Henley were unavailable for comment Tuesday. The meeting was held in the art building auditorium at 9 p.m., Tuesday night.