The University of Southern California is under federal investigation after school officials and campus officers failed to prosecute dozens of rapes. The Huffington Post reports, “A group of 13 students, along with several other unnamed students, claim they suffered from extensive failures on the part of USC administrators and the Department of Public Safety in responding to reports of sexual violence on campus.”
The Department of Education’s Office For Civil Rights have confirmed that they are investigating USC’s failure to prosecute and adjudicate claims of sexual violence and to respond promptly to complaints of harassment on campus, which are violations of the federal gender quality law, Title IX. Although they are only investigating the 13 claims, there were over a 100 that could not be investigated due to a lack of evidence.
An anonymous UCA student said the school failed to report her rape to the LAPD because the rapist did not have an orgasm. She said, “Because he stopped, it was not rape,” she was told, according to the complaint. “Even though his penis penetrated your vagina, because he stopped, it was not a crime.”
Another rape survivor who was assaulted at a fraternity was told by on-campus police, that women should not, “Go out, get drunk and expect not to get raped.”
Tucker Reed, the main complainant, who claims her boyfriend raped her and provided the administration with AUDIO of him admitting to the rape said, “The problems are rampant within every department, pretty much every service on campus, There is an overwhelming disregard for women and students going through obvious trauma, and they traumatized them further.”
Another survivor said the school wouldn’t even allow her to change her schedule, so she had to attend class with her rapist.
More claims said that rapists were merely told to write apology letters as punishment and still allowed to graduate. USC and many other colleges are clearly not addressing on-campus rapes. It’s unfortunate that they won’t even report them to the police and that many officials hold such dismissive, sexist beliefs. Hopefully these survivors will get justice.
The Office of Civil Rights is also currently engaged in similar investigations at Occidental College in Los Angeles, Swarthmore College near Philadelphia, the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill and the University of Colorado at Boulder.
[Image Via Shutter Stock / Ermolaev Alexander ]