As a University of Connecticut alumnus, my heart dropped this morning when I read that seven current and former female students have filed a civil complaint against the university, saying that UConn failed to protect sexual assault victims and investigate their claims. Represented by Gloria Allred, the women filed a Title IX complaint in court Monday. All of their stories are, in short, horrifying. But the woman's story that strikes me the most? 2013 graduate Kylie Angell (who happens to be from my hometown as well).
Angell was raped; her assailant was expelled. However, just two weeks later, he sat next to her in a campus dining hall and grazed her arm. Frightened, she left immediately and went straight to the university police. There, an officer told her that:
... women need to stop spreading their legs like peanut butter, or rape is going to keep on happening until the cows come home.
Oh. Hell. No.
For the record: I don't consider myself a feminist. I just think there should be some sort of expectation in society that men and women alike deserve to be treated with equal respect. Also for the record, apparently administrators reviewed the class schedules of Angell and her attacker after he filed an appeal, and because they "wouldn't be in the same building at the same time," it was OK. Oh, and a last tidbit you should probably know -- Angell's assailant went on to rape another woman a year later.
University President Susan Herbst said today that she was stunned by the ladies' charges that the school is indifferent to assaults. The school has said that they're "confident at this point that these cases were handled thoroughly, swiftly, and appropriately."
CONFIDENT?! I mean, how could they not even take a second look before evaluating everything after hearing these women's claims? The stories?! It makes me disgusted. In my eyes the first thing that needs to happen is the chief of police needs to be let go. There needs to be a strict evaluation of how they handle things in the community standards office. It feels as though these issues at UConn, they've been masked for a very long time.
As a parent, I would never feel comfortable allowing my daughter to attend a college where they readmit rapists. As an alumnus, I wish it weren't my alma mater.
Watch Angell tell her story, here:
Are you as outraged by this horrifying incident as I am? Do you think the university made a mistake by letting the man back on campus?
Image via saishivanews66/YouTube