LEWISTON — Five Bates College seniors who were arrested following a late-night disturbance involving more than 200 students a few days ago walked with their classmates and received diplomas at the college’s commencement activities Sunday.
Their names appeared with the complete list of 2010 graduates, and they marched in their alphabetical place to accept diplomas when their names were called.
“As with their arrest charges, the students are presumed innocent unless proven guilty by the Student Conduct Committee,“ said Bryan McNulty, director of the Office of Communications and Media Relations at Bates, in response to Sun Journal questions.
He said, “We will follow the Student Conduct Committee process, and we don’t know when those decisions will be made.”
In response to the question, “Will any Student Conduct Committee decision be rendered moot because students have graduated?” McNulty said, “We do not have the ability to impose retroactive sanctions under our student conduct policy.”
Lewiston police and Bates College security personnel went to the early Wednesday morning party scene at Smith Hall, North Bardwell Street, when “Throwback Night” revelers (seniors who return to their first-year dorm in an annual celebration) spilled out into the street.
An ambulance driver was reportedly blocked as he drove to an accident call at the scene. Lewiston police encountered student taunts and an officer was injured. The incident resulted in 11 arrests, mostly for failure to disperse, refusing to submit to arrest and disorderly conduct. All were released on bail and court appearances are pending.
The seniors who graduated Sunday were Sarah Marie Ewing, Washington, Conn.; Zachary D. Fenno, Armonk, N.Y.; Samuel Willard Guilford, Surry, Maine; Kush Mahan, Kalamazoo, Mich.; and Mark Philip Stehlik, Buffalo, N.Y.