Student housing debate escalates due to Thorold stabbing

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The student housing debate in Thorold has escalated due to an altercation where a man in his 20s was stabbed, and a 23 year-old woman is facing criminal charges for the stabbing.

The incident, according to the Niagara Regional Police (NRP), was reported around 7:30 p.m. on October 23, having occurred at the intersection of Tuliptree Road and Winterberry Boulevard. The man, a student of Brock University, was transferred to a local hospital before being transferred to an out-of-town hospital.

“When officers arrived, we did find one man in his 20s with some serious wounds,” said Stephanie Sabourin, a Niagara Police spokesperson. “He was taken to hospital initially in town for assessment, and then taken out of town to another hospital for treatment, where he remains with serious, but non-life threatening injuries.”

While allegations are pending, many Thorold residents have used the incident as another example of Brock student-housing on Winterberry Blvd making residential areas unsafe for families. Winterberry Blvd, which made news in the recent weeks for a massive Homecoming party that involved over 500 students, has been a significant subject of debate within Thorold city councils.

The altercation was reported on the Facebook page ‘Thorold — A City Being Destroyed By Students’ and has since gained momentum as a source of fear for families living within the area. The post places onus on the city and Brock University to control students living within the area for the safety of permanent residents and families. The original post has been shared over 836 times.

A rented housing bylaw is slated to pass as early as Nov. 21, which will allow for the licensing of rental homes. (For more on this bylaw check our story on page 6.) There are also debates to move articulated buses off of Winterberry Blvd. as well.

In the meantime, Brock University made a statement earlier in the week regarding the incident as the victim is a student at the University.

“As the result of a domestic disturbance in Thorold on Monday evening, a Brock University student was taken to hospital for treatment of non-life-threatening injuries. Police have charged a suspect, and are not releasing the name of the accused in order to protect the identity of the victim. This matter is under police investigation, and the University cannot make any further comment. Inquiries should be directed to the Niagara Regional Police.”

Brock has also taken proactive measures over the weekend by hiring 14 extra Niagara Regional Police officers between October 26-31 to patrol both on and off campus residences due to Halloween festivities.

“Officers will be vigilant in ensuring students are not participating in underage drinking, unlawful possession or consumption of alcohol and that any noise complaints are addressed,” Niagara Regional Police Chief Bryan MacCulloch said in a media release for Brock University. “We have been working in co-operation with Brock University, the City of St. Catharines and the City of Thorold to ensure the safety and lawful enjoyment of property of both students and the community.”

As for the altercation Monday evening, the names of the victim and the alleged attacker are  withheld due to the incident being investigated as a domestic disturbance. Additionally, there have been no reports on the current status of the victim.

According to a source close to The Brock Press, the victim has been released from hospital. While the 23-year old women was released on $25,000 bail.

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