As members of the Medical School community we are shocked and appalled at what happened to Ken Ray, Graphic Artist in the Department of Biophysics & Biochemistry, as he left work late Tuesday, January 26.
Ken is admired and respected by all who know him for his integrity, his expertise and his willingness to accommodate anyone in the Medical School who comes to him for photographic/graphic arts help and services. He has been a mentor to dozens of Penn work-study students and is a member of the 25-year Club of Penn faculty and staff. He is one of the calmest, kindest, most pleasant people to deal with, especially for panicked lecturers or poster presenters or grant applicants who need a last-minute slide or figure.
Ken almost always works late and sometimes weekends, too, because he has more requests than he can finish in a normal workday and he really cares about all the people who need his services.
If Ken worked 9-5, he would have been comfortably at home Tuesday night instead of unjustly confined to a jail cell for over 24 hours. Unfortunately, he was on his way to the parking garage at 10 p.m., walking a common route through Blockley Hall where a burglary suspect, matching his skin color, had just been reported.
It is incredible to us that at a university like Penn such poor judgment can be used by members of Public Safety in dealing with our community.
The Penn Police Department acknowledges the concerns raised by friends and co-workers of Mr. Kenneth Ray. I can assure you that the Penn Police Department, in conjunction with the Philadelphia Police Department, is conducting a comprehensive investigation of the events leading up to the arrest of Mr. Ray. Statements of all the witnesses involved, as well as physical evidence will be presented to a Municipal Court judge who will determine the ultimate outcome of this case.
--Maureen Rush, Director of Police
Almanac, Vol. 45, No. 19, February 2, 1999