Sexual assault case continues

Published 2:59 pm Tuesday, September 20, 2016

The Longwood University Police Department (LUPD) is classifying an alleged sexual assault that took place on campus as an alleged rape on its crime log. According to the log, the incident took place Sept. 10 between 2:15-3:30 a.m.

Although the university said the incident took place in on-campus housing, it has not released the exact location of the alleged assault.

According to Director of Communications and Media Relations Matthew McWilliams, more information cannot be released yet because the LUPD and Longwood Title IX Office are still investigating the case.

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The log indicated the incident was reported Sept. 13, three days after it allegedly took place.

Title IX — the Education Amendment of 1972 — sets expectations and regulations for the way universities handle sexual misconduct, along with providing the university with certain additional resources.

According to Longwood Title IX Coordinator Jennifer Fraley, universities handle sexual assault cases much the same way as they would had one occurred off campus.

“The university supports those that wish to file criminal charges and we will assist anyone choosing to do so in that process with LUPD,” Fraley said.

She also said the LUPD assists in contacting appropriate law enforcement agencies for incidents that occur off campus.

The difference, Fraley said, is the additional resources the university can provide.

“There (is also) an administrative process that students, faculty, staff or others may choose to participate in to hold Longwood students, faculty and staff accountable for alleged behaviors that may have violated the Longwood University Sexual Misconduct Policy,” she said.

Fraley said this process is separate from any criminal or civil processes that may take place.

“Participation in the Title IX process is completely voluntary at all times. If an individual would like to speak with the coordinator, the investigators or a hearing board, they may do so,” Fraley said, adding individuals may choose not to speak during the process.

She said the university may choose to continue the process, regardless of an individual’s participation. All students, faculty, staff and affiliates of the school are held to the standards of the sexual misconduct policy.

“We take very seriously any incidents that may affect the educational, living and/or working environments of our students, faculty and staff.”