Paine College continues security overhaul after on-campus sexual assault

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News 12 at 11 o'clock / Friday, March 8, 2013

Paine College announcement
The college will offer opportunities for students to get their master's degree in business administration. (WRDW-TV / Aug. 9, 2011)

AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW) -- Right now, Paine College is in the middle of a security overhaul.

And investigators say even though they're not finished, it's already making a difference.

"Everybody says that Paine is just one big family," said Shaquille Ponder.

A family now torn apart after a stranger came onto campus and sexually assaulted one of their own.

Shaquille Ponder, a freshman at Paine College, said the shock is still fresh.

"It was a big scare when they said someone got raped," he said. "And I heard it wasn't the first time."

Deputies have arrested 18-year-old Jairus Rayshawn Dantzler.

He's charged with rape, attempted rape, armed robbery and burglary in connection to three separate incidents over the last four months.

One of those charges links him to an attempted rape at Paine College last fall.

"The female got up from her dorm room to use the restroom," said Richmond County Sheriff Richard Roundtree during a news conference.

"When she came back, the subject was actually inside her room. [The subject] attempted to jump on top of her while she was in bed. She was able to fight the subject off."

Which begs the question of the state of Paine College's security.

"The college has always had campus safety 24 hours a day," said Brandon Brown, vice president of Institutional Advancement at Paine College.

"We always have an officer doing rounds, checking buildings, checking to make sure everything is OK."

But recently, they added 24-hour surveillance.

"We record every minute of the day so that when people come on campus, we know what's going on," Brown said.

Which investigators say helped them get their man.

But Ponder says campus security just hasn't been able to cast a wide enough net.

"They secure the campus but ... it's like, one or two of them," he said.

That's part of the reason Paine College is stepping things up. Instead of campus security, they will now have police officers.

"As we move the campus from campus safety to a campus police department, we'll further strengthen our abilities to deter people from coming on campus and taking up things that they're not supposed to be taking up," Brown said.

Investigators say this wasn't a security breach, but more so a case of one person waiting and watching for an opportunity to make his move.

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