Intruder stumbles into student’s room

Sophomore Sarah Mason went to bed at about 11 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 29 with her roommate sophomore Alex Owen. The two share a triple room in Jane Failing Hall with a third student, who was gone for the night. Their room is the first one off the stairs.

Typically a heavy sleeper, Mason was surprised when she awoke to a young man staggering into her room at about 4 a.m.

Mason asked the man who he was and to leave her room, immediately. However, he just laughed and told her to scoot over so he could climb into bed with her. He ended up passing out on the bed, Mason explained.

“It was weird. His face was on my pillow. It was gross,” Mason said. “I was just frozen, looking at him in shock.”

Mason said she tried to wake him but he was not responding. So, she woke up Owen and the two went to get a resident adviser.

“I couldn’t remember campus security’s phone number, and I left my phone in the room. I didn’t feel comfortable getting it. We were panicking,” Mason said.

As the two went downstairs to get a resident adviser, they found another man passed out in the third floor lounge.

“We knew he didn’t go here either,” Mason said. “The door that separates each floor was closed also, and that never happens. So, we knew something was going on.”

Mason said the second floor resident adviser, junior Holli Brouillette, seemed shocked but accompanied Mason and Owen upstairs. The women were able to wake the man in the lounge who said he was waiting for his friend who was visiting with his girlfriend, freshman Sonora Harris.

Her boyfriend, Alex Nunez of Philomath, was visiting for the night and brought his two friends with him, one of which was the man in Mason’s bed, Christopher Cardenas.

The women called campus security and officers were able to wake Cardenas to question him. He said that he had been drinking and was ‘loaded,’ Mason said.

In response, campus security officers called the McMinnville Police Department. Officers arrived on scene and arrested Cardenas.

Cardenas was cited for unlawful possession of marijuana but was not lodged. All three men were cited for trespassing by campus security.

Nunez disregarded this and returned later Sunday evening. He was arrested for trespassing but not lodged either, according to the McMinnville Police Department.

“The whole experience was really scary,” Mason said.

While talking with a Resident Life area director, Mason was asked what would make her feel safe. She said a peep hole for her door.

“Every time I look at my bed, I think ‘oh, there was a man in my bed who I don’t know.’ I am disgusted,” Mason said.

Mason said that earlier in the semester, the swipe card access for the back door of Jane Failing was broken. She put in a work order to have it fixed.

“It’s ironic that this happened to me,” Mason said. ”Everyone should lock their doors and be more aware of who they’re letting into the building, especially at night.”

Jessica Prokop


Jessica Prokop can be reached at

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