Theme parks are supposed to be places in which Guests and Team Members alike have enjoyable times and make memories that last a lifetime.
Whether it be Walt Disney World Resort, Disneyland Resort, Universal Orlando Resort, Universal Studios Hollywood, Six Flags, Busch Gardens, SeaWorld, or many others, theme parks are some of the most beloved destinations on earth.
However, according to reports from WTOL, one popular theme park faces nearly 30 reports of sexual assault by Team Members.
Cedar Point is known for its thrilling attractions, including massive roller coasters, as well as family rides that are fun for everyone. However, WTOL reports that the Sandusky Police Department has 27 sexual assault reports stemming from incidents at Cedar Point housing just in the last year.
Many Cedar Point Team Members live at a nearby apartment during the theme park’s season and Police Chief Jared Oliver said the number is large.
“I don’t know how many hundreds of employees live in the employee housing. I don’t know how many they have who are part-time living there or full-time living there. I know there’s a larger population that takes over those housing areas during the season, so there’s a lot of people and a small place. But that is a larger number (of assaults),” Sandusky Police Chief Jared Oliver said. “I would like to see a smaller number than that.”
However, the report notes that the real number of assaults could be much higher due to many incidents going unreported.
Many women told their stories to WTOL during this report.
Kacie Wilson shared that she had been locked outside of her apartment one night when a young man, Donelle Fowlkes, helped her. He later asked her if she wanted to hang out and she ended up falling asleep in his apartment.
“I woke up to him inside of me. I pushed him away, and I got up and just left,” Kacie said. “I didn’t know what to do.”
Another victim who requested to remain anonymous said she was assaulted for more than an hour.
“I had my door unlocked to go back and forth to the bathroom to get ready for bed, like taking out my contacts,” she said. “He walked in – unannounced – and he grabbed me and threw me on the bed.”
Many of these incidents are still under investigation. Cedar Point issued the following statement:
“Cedar Point takes these matters very seriously. All reports of associate misconduct are immediately responded to, reviewed, and if appropriate, escalated to local law enforcement for further investigation.”
Inside the Magic will continue to keep you updated on the investigation into these incidents.