Females at FAMU on high alert

“No Means No”. Photo courtesy: TaosNews.com

On Oct 2., authorities in Orlando confirmed that missing person Miya Marcano, a 19-year-old student at Valencia College, had been found dead after missing for a week. Marcano was last seen Sept. 24 at the Arden Villas apartment complex where she lived in Orlando.

John Mina, the Orange County Sheriff, shared an update on the case during a press conference last Wednesday.

“Miya was found bound with black duct tape on her feet and hands, and her mouth was also covered with black duct tape,” Mina said.

Mina stated that Armando Caballero, a maintenance worker at Arden Villas apartment complex, is the person responsible for her death, after Marcano refused his romantic interests.

Caballero was found dead by suicide, three days after Marcano went missing.

Although Marcano’s death was horrifying, there have been similar cases across the country.

After these recent tragedies, the topics of sexual harassment and safety precautions have been discussed among women at FAMU.

Aléa Mexile, a senior broadcast journalism major, is deeply saddened by the rise of missing women across the country.

“The rise of missing women really does scare me especially because a lot of the women are college aged,” Mexile said. “A lot of times schools and public events take defensive items such as pepper spray away from us when we need it more than ever.”

Mexile, a student producer at FAMU News 20 at Five, often leaves campus late after finishing her daily tasks.

“I try to stay off my phone as much as possible when I’m on campus to ensure that I’m focusing on my surroundings,” she said. “Also, I tend to walk with someone else, especially at night, because the buddy system is great to feel safer.”

Leon County’s crime rate continues to fall. It was ranked sixth in Florida in 2020 ,according to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement’s annual report.

Chyna Daniels, a graduating health science major, sends her condolences to families of missing people and takes precautions to ensure her safety on and off campus.

“I’m so sad about all of the recent stories about missing and kidnappings,” Daniels said. “My heart goes out to their families.  As a result of these tragedies, it is imperative to stay alert at all times.  We cannot be distracted with our phones.”

Daniels advised women to always let someone know that you are safe.

“I am particularly cautious,” she said. “My mom is always aware of my coming and goings, I never walk and text so that I stay alert and aware of my surroundings and not lose focus. I lock my car doors immediately after getting in the car and I never park in a secluded lot.  I never go out by myself at night.  Call or text people once safe.”

It is imperative that to keep our FAMUly safe,. Students should always walk with someone, pay attention to your surroundings, and report to law enforcement for assistance.

For emergencies, dial 911 or contact FAMU PD at (850) 599-3256 and Tallahassee police at (850) 891-4200.