An Oxford student may lose his eye following a violently
assault on Friday night at the Corpus Christi Ball. The victim
sustained serious injuries which may leave him partially blind. An American man, not thought to be a member of the university,
has been charged in relation to the incident, and has since been
released on bail. Ilya Zarembsky, a 23-year-old man from Massachusetts, was
charged on Saturday with causing Grievous Bodily Harm. He
appeared at Oxford Magistrates’ Court on Monday 3 May where
he was bailed to re-appear on 17 May. Stuart Bremner, studying for an MBA at Templeton College, was
punched in the face three times in the bar area of the main quad
at the ball. After treatment by a St John’s Ambulance team,
he was taken to the John Radcliffe hospital before being
transferred to the Radcliffe Infirmary where emergency surgery
was performed to remove part of his iris. It is as yet unclear whether he has completely lost sight in
the eye in question, but doctors have predicted that he may
regain only 60% of his vision “at best.” The incident took place at 2am after the two men, thought to
be previously unknown to each other, began a conversation whilst
queuing for drinks. The porters at the College and eleven hired security officials
then detained a man at the instruction of the College Dean while
the police were called. They were unable to attend, telling the College they were
“too busy” at the time. After a second unsuccessful attempt was made to summon them,
college authorities decided that they would have to let their
detainee go. A suspect was contacted by Oxford Police the next day, through
a member of Corpus, whose guest he was at the time. The organizers of the ball refused to comment on the incident,
following an email sent to all members of the College by the Dean
forbidding them from talking to members of the press about the
incident. The Police, however, are also having problems finding
eyewitnesses to the incident but will be continuing their
investigation into the assault. Many people at the ball, for which they had paid the princely
sum of £50, were completely unaware that the incident had
occured and the rest of the evening passed relatively
uneventfully. As the man is still awaiting trial, Cherwell is unable to
reveal further details of the allegations.ARCHIVE: 1st week TT 2004