Students stop attack on IU co-ed — (13 WTHR)

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13 WTHR Indiana’s News Leader

Kris Kirschner/Eyewitness News

Bloomington, May 5, 2004

Early Tuesday morning a 20-year old Indiana University student returned from a friend’s house to her dorm on campus. But as she began the walk across the courtyard to Teter Hall, someone suddenly grabbed her from behind.

“The male subject threw her to the ground,” explains Indiana University Police Lt. Jerry Minger. “She immediately began fighting him off.”

In her effort to escape, the woman screamed for help. Two other students heard her pleas, saw the struggle and went to her rescue.

“They actually gave chase and saw him leave in a maroon Volvo station wagon.” Lt. Minger credits the two good samaritans for landing a suspect behind bars.

Police arrested 24-year-old Michael Hollett, a Bloomington resident who now faces charges of battery and confinement.

Hollett isn’t a student, but for the past two years he has worked as a bartender at a popular campus pub.

His boss described Hollett as a good guy, protective of the female patrons, but someone who also sought help for emotional troubles.

Although he didn’t admit to the crime, Hollett did tell police he blacked out and doesn’t remember the attack.

As for the victim, she was not hurt, thanks in large part to the quick-thinking of complete strangers.

Jessica Clough says, “It shows there are actually people out there who will stop to help.”

Matt Mueller adds, “I think it’s wonderful. It’s altruism at its finest.”

Attacks are uncommon on campus, say police, perhaps because students are willing to watch out for each other.

Jacob Halverson and Joseph Reginaldi are the two men police credit with catching the suspect. They were able to provide descriptions and a license plate number of the car Hollett drove.

Hollett told his boss he takes prescription anti-depressants, but police say they do not believe drugs or alcohol were involved in this case.