Kent State University junior Leandra Westbrook claims to have been wrongfully detained by campus police after a student cadet heard her on the phone with a friend, talking about her concealed carry license (CCL), Campus Reform reported.
During the conversation that took place on April 28th, Westbrook mentioned how "it is a shame that I cannot carry a gun on campus, considering I have my carry license.”
Officers came to Westbrook's 200-person anatomy class, took her outside and searched her. No firearm was found. The officer asked Westbrook if he could search her bag. She consented and again, nothing was found.
Campus Reform obtained a copy of the police report:
Westbrook doesn't believe anyone was actually concerned about their safety.
“I do not believe they genuinely thought I was a threat, because I specifically said I had a license to carry,” she told Campus Reform. “In the conversation I had, there was no way to misinterpret what I said, or to even suggest that I had a gun with me.”
According to Westbrook, she believes she was a target because of her political activism on campus. She's the former Vice President of her campus' Turning Point USA chapter and she sits on the board of directors for the university's Students for Life chapter.
Westbrook says she “would not be surprised if the student cadet who reported me was targeting me for being pro-Second Amendment" because she's been harassed about her political beliefs in the past.
In light of the situation, Westbrook has decided to start a concealed carry club on campus.
“My hopes are to teach people about gun safety and the gun control laws we already have in place, because a lot of people who speak on the subject are very uneducated [about gun laws],” Westbrook said.
Filing A False Report
Westbrook met with the Dean of Students about the harassment she's been facing and was told there's nothing the school can do. Now, she's going beyond campus for help. She's wanting to file a police report on the cadets who filed a false report. The problem? Westbrook has yet to receive the cadets names.
“I can’t file a report for false reporting against them unless I know their names,” Westbrook told Campus Reform. “This is a problem because these cadets are training to become police officers. Making false reports like this is not only damaging to my reputation but the cadets’ as well.”
Westbrook reached out to the university to obtain the names of the cadets who reported her for the police report she wants to file. The university sent her request to the campus police department, who said no one took the names of the reporting cadets and phone logs were not an option since the report was made in-person, something that is common practice.
"Since there were no witness statements, there's no indication about what the cadets heard or saw,” she said. “Due to this, it makes it harder for me to prove what actually happened because it turns into a game of ‘he said, she said.’ You cannot compare stories when a witness statement was not taken.”
Kent University spokesman Eric Mansfield provided Campus Reform with the following statement on the situation:
Kent State University is committed to protecting life and property, maintaining the peace and ensuring a safe and secure learning environment for students, faculty, staff, and guests of the university.
Despite repeated request for names, Westbrook says the university has continually given her the run-around.
“Moving forward, Kent State should do the right thing and release the name of the cadet who falsely reported me,” she said. “It is essential to my own safety that I find out who reported me to see if they had bad intentions with their false reporting.”
Editor's note: The headline of this article has been updated.