MCTC students 'shocked' by bathroom attack, suspect appears in court

A Bloomington man appeared in court Tuesday, after allegedly hiding in a women's bathroom and trying to sexually assault a student at Minneapolis Community and Technical College. 

The attack happened mid-day Friday in the bathroom of the college’s primary building on Hennepin Avenue.

Several days later, the attempted rape still rattles nerves across the urban campus.

“[I felt] shock, fear. I was crippled with fear, sadness, rage…just a mixture of emotions,” said MCTC student Lauren Feiersinger.

According to prosecutors the suspect, Asad Mohamed, hid out in a bathroom stall, crawled underneath the partition and attacked the woman. Mohamed is charged with third degree criminal sexual conduct, making terroristic threats and fourth degree assault of a school official. 

Authorities believe only her screams for help prevented something even more horrific, as fellow students, staff and security rushed in.

“That says what we are doing is working," said MCTC president Sharon Pierce. "If you cry out for help, you will get help. Our people will not stand by and watch or allow something to happen to our community or our neighbors.”

President Pierce insists her campus is safe, explaining the school has a well-trained public safety department and that this was an isolated incident that was quickly thwarted.

As for the defendant, he has a disturbing history of arrests for lewd and sexual misconduct and was on probation at the time of Friday’s alleged attack.

Turns out a pair of recent criminal indecent exposure cases were dismissed because he was deemed mentally ill.

At his first appearance, Mohamed’s defense attorney told the court his client is in and out of the hospital, that he hears voices and is on medication to treat his schizophrenia.