College students pleased with handling of break-in

Students at William Paterson University say they are happy with the way university police handled an attempted break-in earlier this week.

University authorities say Det. Cpl. Ellen DeSimone was patrolling inside the North Tower dorm when she spotted someone cutting a window screen in an attempted break-in. DeSimone's gun allegedly went off as she struggled with the suspect, 26-year-old Eric Kinkle of Allentown.

Students like Maria Palasciano say they're relieved an officer was around at the right time. She also credits the university with appropriately managing the situation's fallout.

"I thought they handled it well," says Palasciano. "I really liked how they sent an e-mail to everybody just telling what exactly happened, so there were no rumors going around."

Nobody was seriously hurt in the incident. The bullet hit a wall across the hallway, and no students were around at the time.

The Passaic County Prosecutor's Office has gotten involved in the case as well after learning DeSimone pulled out her weapon. State guidelines only allow officers to draw a gun if either they feel their or someone else's life is in danger.

Kinkle is being held on $50,000 bail. Police are investigating whether he is responsible for an earlier string of break-ins at the dorm.

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