SJSU student suspected of dorm groping arrested

January 28, 2012 12:31:38 AM PST
A man suspected of groping four women at San Jose State University is under arrest. Michael Escobar, 21, is a student and is accused of assaulting the women while they were sleeping in their own dorm rooms.

Escobar did not live in Jo West Dorm, but the San Jose State student easily got into the building, likely following someone else who did have access.

"It's not hard to get into the buildings late at night because you can just tailgate somebody in," SJSU dorm resident Pedro Garcia said.

Campus police say Escobar started roaming the floors, looking for unlocked bedroom doors, and groped four young women while they were sleeping. The attacks were first reported shortly after 3:30 a.m.

Police used what the victims told them and matched that to video from several vantage points to identify the suspect. Escobar was arrested around noon.

"We did purchase an extensive camera system tracks quite a bit of movement at the entrances, at the exits and on every floor and the video is quite clear," SJSU spokesperson Pat Lopes Harris said.

A text alert went out to students warning them of the situation.

Police arrested the suspect off campus and say while he is a student, he does not live on campus.

The quick arrest was a big relief to students.

"Yeah, within the day, within a few hours, I think they did a great job," SJSU dorm resident Kathleen Rojas said.

"It feels good that at least they have the guy that did it so hopefully it won't happen again," SJSU dorm resident Marisa Vela said.

The easy access to dorms that are supposed to be secure with key cards has raised security concerns.

"It's kind of scary; it's just like, am I safe in my own room? People should just lock their doors, you know," SJSU dorm resident Basia Jones said.

University officials say students have always been encouraged to lock their bedroom doors at night but the university also likes to foster a community-like environment within the dorms, so it will be meeting with students to discuss what other security measures may be put in place.