Connect with us
[adrotate banner="51"]

Crime

University of Richmond student files Title IX complaint following handling of alleged rape

The student’s account of the university’s alleged mistreatment of her sexual assault case went viral after being published to The Huffington Post on Tuesday.

Avatar

Published

on

A University of Richmond student has filed a Title IX complaint following the way she says her school handled an alleged rape that took place at the off-campus home of another student in July of 2015.

Cecilia Carreras, who we are identifying by name solely because she chose to disclose her identity publicly, penned an essay on The Huffington Post’s self-publishing contributor’s section Tuesday entitled “There’s a Brock Turner in all o(UR) lives.” The story gives a detailed first-person account of the way university officials handled her case, making comparisons to the case of recently-released Stanford student and convicted rapist Brock Turner. The article has been shared thousands of times on social media. Carreras wrote, in part:

I knew coming forward about my rape wouldn’t guarantee that I would feel safe at school again. What I didn’t know, however, was that upon coming forward the University of Richmond would join the ranks of schools known for protecting their athletes. So when I say we don’t know Brock, but we might know someone like him: we do.

Spider Athletics has its own Brock Turner and Richmond’s administration did what it had to do to protect him.

Richmond’s Brock Turner admitted to school officials, three separate times, that he heard me say stop. Those officials later told a hearing board they thought he was confused when he told them that. No one denied, however, that he penetrated me without my consent. But for Richmond, their Brock Turner having an orgasm was of utmost importance. I was told that it was reasonable for him to penetrate me for a few more minutes if he was going to finish. The University of Richmond and Brock Turner’s father seemed to agree- why let a few minutes of “action” jeopardize the rest of the accused’s life?

The University of Richmond has been under investigation by the Department of Education for other alleged Title IX violations dating back to at least 2014, along with 75 other schools. Carreras points this out in her essay, claiming her treatment was and is symptomatic of a larger, university-wide problem when it comes to the treatment of victims of sexual assault who choose to come forward to administrators.

Richmond is already under investigation by the Department of Education, but it doesn’t seem like that is any incentive for them to do better and be better.

I came forward over a year ago and I still have days where it seems like an uphill battle with Richmond. In July, our very own Brock was put on “restricted access,” meaning he’s only allowed on campus for athletics related activities and class- a punishment that lets him live his life at Richmond the way he’s always lived it, except now he can’t go to the dining hall, library, or gym. I hope that by speaking out Richmond realizes it MUST be better. It must fully commit to ending sexual violence.

The University of Richmond released a statement responding to Carreras’ claims on Wednesday, in which the school claims “many of the assertions of fact are inaccurate and do not reflect the manner in which reports of sexual misconduct have been investigated and adjudicated at the University.”

We have come together today to write to you because we were deeply saddened to read in a commentary in the Huffington Post yesterday about the pain felt by one of our students, and to hear echoes of that pain from other community members.

[…]

To be clear: we stand against sexual misconduct. As individuals and as a University, we are committed to responding actively to reports and supporting our students. We are equally committed to education and prevention, including supporting peer programs such as Spiders for Spiders. Sexual misconduct is an issue that affects all campuses across the nation, and we are working to care for those affected and to reduce instances here at the University of Richmond, with the goal of eliminating sexual misconduct altogether. To do that, we need your continued help: we must all join together in embracing our shared values, our expectations for our community, and how we handle reports and support each other.

We wish to reiterate several fundamental points: all students should continue to report any instances of sexual misconduct; all community members should continue to support survivors and others affected, through their words and their actions; and all students can and should expect that reports of sexual misconduct will be investigated and adjudicated thoroughly, fairly, and equitably.

While we cannot address specifically the contentions in the recent Huffington Post commentary, given our commitment to student privacy, and we respect the right of all students to express their opinion and discuss their perspective, we think it is important for us to share that many of the assertions of fact are inaccurate and do not reflect the manner in which reports of sexual misconduct have been investigated and adjudicated at the University.

Read the university’s full response here.

Following the University of Richmond’s public response, Carreras penned a second article on The Huffington Post in which she claims she is “speechless.” The lengthy article contains many screenshots of emails and text messages with school administrators and claims her alleged attacker broke a “no contact” order put in place by the university. Carreras wrote, in part:

My hope in writing the article was that people would consider the fact that simply knowing someone is not a reason to claim that that individual is incapable of committing sexual assault. I certainly did not expect the outpouring of rage against Richmond, however rightly deserved. What that did, though, was allow other women to feel comfortable sharing their stories of assault, either on the University of Richmond Alumni Page or messaging me privately to tell me how proud they are that I was able to give a voice to something they had experienced. I was (and am) glad that so many people were touched by my words, but saddened by how many women could relate to my story. A lot of people have expressed the fact that it’s impossible to know both sides of the story and they’re right. It’s not always easy to explain, especially something as complicated as what my case turned into.

Read Carreras’ full second essay here.

The University of Richmond will hold an event this evening entitled “It Ends Now: A Culture of Share Responsibility” to discuss sexual assault cases. The event was previously scheduled. It takes place Thursday evening at 6:30 PM in the Alice Haynes Room.

We’ll continue to follow this story as it develops.

Editor’s Note: As a policy, we do not identify the victims of sexual assault, but in this case, the student chose to publicly identify herself across a number of media outlets.

Comments

comments

Trevor Dickerson is the co-founder and editor of RVAhub.com, lover of all things Richmond, and a master of karate and friendship for everyone.

Continue Reading
Advertisement

Crime

Four charged for throwing objects at restaurant patrons, rocks at police car, and assaulting officer Tuesday night

On Tuesday night a group of individuals walked through Richmond, eventually damaging vehicles and buildings in several areas in the city and causing unrest. Four were arrested.

RVAHub Staff

Published

on

On Tuesday night a group of individuals walked through Richmond, eventually damaging vehicles and buildings in several areas in the city and causing unrest. Four were arrested.

After leaving Monroe Park, the group headed west along West Main Street. At approximately 9:54 p.m., individuals in the group were observed throwing objects at patrons at a restaurant. Soon after, officers observed an individual throw a large stone and damage an RPD K-9 vehicle. A photo of the stone that was recovered is attached. Later, that same individual was seen throwing an object against a business. As officers moved to arrest this individual, a group member assaulted an officer.

An unlawful assembly was not declared and no chemical agents were deployed.

The Department consulted with the Office of the Commonwealth’s Attorney on possible charges and charged four individuals. Their photos are attached.

Paxton Chapman was charged with obstruction of justice, carrying a concealed weapon, and pedestrian in the roadway.

Saraswati Rowe was charged with obstructing free passage.

Harrison Sellers was charged with inciting a riot and throwing a missile at an occupied vehicle.

Michael Toney was charged with assault on a law enforcement officer.

Anyone with further information is asked to call Crime Stoppers at (804) 780-1000.

Comments

comments

Continue Reading

Crime

Arrest made in Chamberlayne Avenue homicide

Richmond Police detectives have made an arrest in the homicide of Estelle Pugh that occurred earlier this month on Chamberlayne Avenue.

RVAHub Staff

Published

on

From Richmond Police:

Richmond Police detectives have made an arrest in the homicide of Estelle Pugh that occurred earlier this month on Chamberlayne Avenue.

Louis Ellis, Jr. surrendered to authorities in Florida after Richmond Police Department detectives, investigating the homicide, originally charged Ellis with felony credit card fraud in connection with the murder. His booking photo is attached.

Ellis has now been charged with first degree murder and felony assault after a welfare check was conducted and Pugh was found murdered at approximately 8:22 a.m. on Tuesday, October 6, in an apartment in the 3600 block of Chamberlayne Avenue.

Anyone with further information about this incident is asked to call Detective A. Sleem at (804) 815-7123 or contact Crime Stoppers at (804) 780-1000. The P3 Tips Crime Stoppers app for smartphones also may be used. All Crime Stoppers reporting methods are anonymous.

Comments

comments

Continue Reading

Crime

VIDEO: Police seeking suspect in armed robbery at convenience store on Mechanicsville Turnpike

Just after 6:30 a.m. on Sunday, September 20, an unknown male entered the 804 Market in the 1600 block of Mechanicsville Turnpike. He displayed a handgun, gave the clerk a plastic bag, and told him to fill it with money.

RVAHub Staff

Published

on

From RPD:

Richmond Police detectives are asking for the public’s help to identify the individual in the photos and video who is the suspect in a commercial robbery that occurred earlier this month.

Just after 6:30 a.m. on Sunday, September 20, an unknown male entered the 804 Market in the 1600 block of Mechanicsville Turnpike. He displayed a handgun, gave the clerk a plastic bag, and told him to fill it with money. The suspect then fled with an undisclosed amount of money and was last seen running east on Fairfield Avenue.

Anyone with information about his identity is asked to call First Precinct Detective D. Jones at (804) 646-0689 or contact Crime Stoppers at (804) 780-1000 or at www.7801000.com. The P3 Tips Crime Stoppers app for smartphones may also be used.  All Crime Stoppers methods are anonymous.

Comments

comments

Continue Reading

Richmond Weather