First responder to Milzman ricin incident recounts experience, criticizes University response
Thomas Lloyd (SFS ’15), the student and friend who reported Daniel Milzman (formerly COL ’16) to the police for possession of the deadly poison ricin in his McCarthy dorm, wrote about his taxing experience both during and after Milzman’s arrest and trial in an op-ed published in The Hoya. In his op-ed, Lloyd criticizes the University both for the way they responded to his report and for the way they treated him in the aftermath.
The op-ed follows in the wake of Milzman’s Monday sentencing to one year in prison, three years of supervision, and 400 hours of community service.
Lloyd writes about how, after unsuccessfully trying to convince Milzman to leave the ricin behind and identify a target, he called over two friends and called the Counseling and Psychiatric Services on-call line, after Milzman left with the ricin. After Lloyd told the operator that one student had the means and desire to kill someone, it took over an hour for a CAPS counselor to come on the line.
“Well, you’re an RA, right? Do you know anyone you should call to help this student? Whoever you call, have them follow up with me tomorrow or later this week,” the counselor said, according to Lloyd. Lloyd then went to the community director on duty at the time, who helped get the police involved, resulting in Milzman’s arrest the next morning.
Aside from CAPS’ troubling response that night, Lloyd felt continually let down by the University. Lloyd recounts how his name originally became public via Voice reporting more as a result of a personal breakdown than from his coming forward.
“[W]hile I refused to give a statement, I knew my name would be revealed,” Lloyd wrote. “On some level, I wanted it to be, if only so I wouldn’t have to process these feelings alone and in silence.”
From that point on, Lloyd felt that the University hung his status as an RA and his contractual obligation to confidentiality over his head to prevent him from talking more about the incident to the press, including The Washington Post.
Lloyd did not respond to Vox‘s request for comment.
Photo: Vox Populi