An important message from the Vice President of Enrollment and Student Services

Dear Western Community,

I am deeply saddened to share with you that a Western Washington University student was killed in an apartment off-campus late last night. There is no ongoing threat, and details are still emerging as Bellingham police investigate. Further information is available at the City of Bellingham website. We are not releasing the name of the victim pending notification of her family. Rigoberto Galvan, 22, was arrested almost immediately, and is currently in custody, charged with first-degree murder; he has also been trespassed from Western Washington University. 

Our hearts go out to the friends and families affected by this tragic news. In the days ahead, as we mourn the loss of a valued student and friend, you may find that you are experiencing grief, anger, frustration, and sorrow. Please don’t hesitate to ask for help or support.

The WWU Counseling Center will provide assistance to any student impacted by this incident.  Students may contact the office at 360-650-3164 for support.  Employees may access the Employee Assistance Program at 877-313-4455. Both numbers are available 24 hours a day.

If you or someone you know has been impacted by violence, either recently or in the past, CASAS, a confidential support service for Western students, is available at 360-650-3700, in Old Main 585B, or by contacting Deidre Evans, the CASAS coordinator, directly at 360-650-7982. DVSAS (Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Services) is also available for support.

For help in supporting someone you care about, the Washington State Coalition against Domestic Violence offers helpful resources, including this Friends and Family Guide.

You may also find these resources from Love Is Respect to be helpful:

I will continue to share information as it becomes available. In times of sorrow, our community’s strength and compassion are invaluable. Let’s extend comfort and kindness to one another.

With sadness,


Melynda Huskey

Vice President for Enrollment and Student Services


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Wednesday, August 14, 2019 - 4:06pm