In order to provide students, staff, faculty and community members answers in regards to the incident that occurred Oct. 13, 2016, between Louis Munoz and Fullerton College Campus Safety Officers, President Greg Schulz held an open forum on campus.
Schulz revealed during the forum that an independent investigation by an outside firm has begun. Officer Dino Skokos is currently on leave of absence, a thorough review of campus procedures is taking place to make sure they promote a safe campus.
Campus procedure and policy is available in the Fullerton College Catalog and on the North Orange County Community College District website where Board Policies AP7600 & BP7600 detail Campus Safety guidelines across the district.
President Greg Schulz opened the floor to questions from the attendees, but was mostly unable to give definite answers to most of the questions due to legal constraints of the pending investigation.
Schulz began the forum by stating where the college stands as of now and by acknowledging the incident.
“First, let me assure you that myself and everyone in our college community is committed to insuring that Fullerton College is a safe and welcoming campus,” Schulz said, “we recognize, like you, some videos have recently surfaced on social media that raised many questions and we’re going to get answers to all those questions.”
The president then spoke about the current status of Officer Dino Skokos and the current state of the investigation.
“The campus safety officer, who’s shown in the video, has been placed on leave,” Schulz said, “as we continue to get all of the answers to our questions, an independent investigation has begun.”
Schulz has hopes that the investigation will lead to answers about the incident.
“My hope and belief is that that independent investigation will be thorough, thoughtful, fair and as quick as possible so that I and we can have all of our questions answered,” Schulz said.
He finally spoke about the fact that he is currently unable to disclose certain information due to the ongoing investigation, but the campus will inform the public as soon as information becomes available.
The microphone then was offered to those who had questions.
Joey Bryan of D-Student Productions pressed Schulz with questions.
“If he is found guilty will he be fired? Do you know who is in charge of hiring and firing?” Ryan asked, “Do you have a kid? What would you do if that happened to your son or your daughter?”
Schulz responded to the former questions from Ryan by stating that he doesn’t have an answer to whether or not the officer will be fired, but that the Board of Trustees will make the decision. He then responded to the latter set of questions.
Faby Jacome, a Fullerton College student and a community organizer in Orange County came to the microphone next, stated “As a student and as a young adult I do not feel safe on this campus after the incident that happened, mainly because the way it was handled,” and focused her questions on transparency with the investigation and why other officers haven’t been arrested.
Another man from D-Student Productions focused his questions on the authority guards have and that this security guard overstepped his power and stated that “this man should be in jail.”
The audience then applauded after that statement.
Christian Fletcher, editor for the Hornet, brought up the issue of campus ID cards and their importance, so much so that the consideration of them being free was stated.
One student personally asked, “What did you think of the video, as a civilian?”
“I was really disappointed,” Schulz said, “It was incredibly difficult to watch.”
Faby Jacome, who voiced several questions for Schulz, was not satisfied with the president’s answers.
“There was transparency with the president, but it is already Monday and so they had most of the weekend to have some answers to our questions,” Jacome said, “There was also the matter of not addressing the second incident. As a student, these statements have not made me any safer as I had walked in.”
President Greg Schulz concluded the forum and was “really thankful that students, staff members, faculty and also community members took the time to be here.”
Lastly, Schulz acknowledged that “there is more work to do. The investigation is a key part of it but it doesn’t stop there. We’ll continue to have forums and I think we might design one at a different time that works well with students and community members.”
For complete coverage of the event and all the questions & comments, the Fullerton College Hornet will be uploading video of the meeting, as well as audio of the forum. Minutes were also taken during the event by the campus, which are available upon request.