Duerson’s story: ‘FBI neighbors’ invading

Beth Sewell

When Louisville sophomore Paul Duerson III hears a noise outside his door, he thinks it is one of two things – a drunk student fumbling their way home or the undercover FBI agent that he is certain secretly lives in Poland Hall.

Duerson said that although Poland residents were never told an FBI agent was going to live in the dorm, he and others have theorized that’s who the unknown face belongs to.

“After all this stuff happened with the robberies at gunpoint and the weed that was sent in the mail, there have been FBI agents everywhere,” Duerson said. “And you just know when someone moves in the dorm midway through the semester and is just always looking around . they’re with the FBI.”

Duerson isn’t bothered by the FBI presence he thinks exists, but he said “the FBI” are beginning to wear out their welcome. He wants to feel safe just like every other student, but the “FBI’s searching and surveillance” is getting in the way of Duerson’s daily life.

“One time the FBI came, they had on their suits and all, and they made us have a fake fire drill so they could go in and search our dorms,” Duerson said. “That’s an invasion of privacy.”

Because of the recent magnifying glass that Duerson feels has been placed over Poland Hall and Pearce-Ford Tower, he has decided to move off-campus next semester.

Duerson said he just wants to stay away from trouble. And he said that although he isn’t a part of the crime wave, he doesn’t want to get pulled in by the “undertow of investigation.”

“People that aren’t doing anything shouldn’t be subjected to all that stuff,” Duerson said. “I don’t feel threatened, but it is an inconvenience.”

The greatest grief the “investigation” has caused Duerson is not the police or “FBI’s involvement,” it is the university’s. Duerson said residence assistants need to be more consistent with their safety precautions. He said showing your ID in the lobby can be effective, if it is consistent.

“Sometimes they ask to see it and sometimes they don’t,” Duerson said. “It’s just a hassle when I’ve lived there for over three months, and I never know when I can just walk in and when I have to stop, get my ID out, show it to the front desk and all that.”

The importance of feeling safe in the dorms has been overshadowed for Duerson by the importance of just living a regular life. He’s ready to leave behind his “FBI neighbors” and move into a place with no guns, no drugs and no fake fire drills.

“There are just a lot of things I have to deal with by living in the dorms, and I’m ready to move away from it,” Duerson said. “I’m not looking for trouble.”