By Cassiane San Pablo
Eighteen-year-old freshman, Chennel “Jazzy” Rowe was harassed by her roommate Brianna Brochu at the University of Hartford in West Hartford, Connecticut. Brochu was accused of rubbing used tampons on her backpack, poisoned her body lotion, among many other things. Police are saying it was a bias crime.
At a point, Rowe had so much bacteria in her throat, she couldn’t even speak. Rowe thought it was a simple cold but she found out through social media that she was being poisoned by her roommate. Brochu was taken into police custody by the West Hartford Police Department on Oct. 28. She has been arrested and charged with two misdemeanors and her bail was set at 1,000 dollars. Brochu is banned from the University of Hartford and was ordered by the court to have no contact with Rowe.
According to diversityinc.com, University president Gregory S. Woodward said in a statement Wednesday What day? that University Public Safety was notified of Brochu’s actions on Oct. 17 and the West Hartford police were called in. According to court documents obtained by Heavy.com, that was the day university authorities and Rowe were made aware of Brochu’s Instagram posts.
Rowe said she felt ostracized by Brochu since the beginning of the school year and put in a room change request.
“On 10/17/17 she began moving her belongings out of the room she shared with Brochu and into her newly assigned room,” according to the documents. An Instagram post on Oct. 17 Brochu stated “Finally did it yo girl got rid of her roommate!! After 1 1/2 months of spitting in her coconut oil, putting moldy clam dip in her lotions, rubbing used tampons on her backpack, putting her toothbrush places where the sun doesn’t shine, and so much more I can finally say goodbye Jamaican Barbie.”
Of course, with any big news story, social media always has a input. Rowe took this situation to her Facebook and stated on Oct. 30 “As a young African American woman I don’t want to become another statistic. When it comes to college incidents/crimes and racial cases justice needs to be served. Colleges are known to just sweep issues that happen within the campus under the rug, making the issue disappear and not doing anything about it.”
It continued “ Now this isn’t right at all and this is where the public gets involved to push for things to be done right. I’m not holding my tongue any longer about my situation because this is just ridiculous to hear nothing back from my school about this situation. As a African American woman I have to fight for myself and others to not become some statistic. I’m not making this known. I’m giving you guys the option to choose where you would like to hear this information either through Facebook live or Instagram. I will then go on live and let it be known.”
On Monday night, Oct 30th, Brochu’s roommate Rowe posted a 90-minute viral Facebook video documenting the situation. During her Facebook live video, she was telling everyone exactly what happened. Rowe, who recently experienced throat pain, is convinced Brochu’s schemes are to blame for her mysterious illness. Brochu admitted to the cops that she licked Rowe’s silverware and smeared her bodily fluids on her backpack, but was bluffing about messing with her lotions and cosmetics — that part was supposed to be a “joke.”
Meanwhile, supporters of Rowe took to Twitter using the hashtag #JusticeForJazzy to stand up for her. Shonda Rhimes, a television producer posts on her twitter account on Nov.1, “That this type of ignorant hate can flourish in 2017 tests my faith in humanity. Who raised this inhumane ignorant waste of space? Who chose to be her friend and look the other way?” when she hears about the story of Chennel “Jazzy” Rowe.
Brochu is no longer a student at the university.