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USC Student: School Official Said My Rape Didn't Count Because Attacker Didn't Orgasm

The school is under federal investigation for failing to seriously address rape and sexual assault, and the allegations are devastating.
 
 
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The U.S. Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights (OCR) has launched an investigation into the University of Southern California's response to rape reports. More than thirteen students filed a Title IX  claim in May, saying they had been victims of "extensive failures on the part of USC administrators and the Department of Public Safety (DPS) in responding to reports of sexual violence on campus," and the specifics of the allegations are horrifying.  

One student, who remains anonymous, said a Department of Public Safety (DPS) detective told her campus police determined no rape occurred in her case because her alleged rapist did not orgasm. The lack of ejaculation, she says the official told her, meant that they would not defer the case to the Los Angeles Police Department. 

"Because he stopped, it was not rape," she claims to have been told, "Even though his penis penetrated your vagina, because he stopped, it was not a crime." According to the claim, this is not the only egregious example of USC authorities downplaying rape. Another student alleges that she was reporting to DPS her sexual assault, which happened at a fraternity, when he told the woman and the friend (also a sexual assault survivor) who went with her to file the claim that women shouldn't "go out, get drunk and expect not to get raped."

Lead complainant, Tucker Reed, said that, despite audio recordings of her ex-boyfriend admitting to raping her, USC dismissed her claim. At one point, claims Reed, an official told her they preferred an "educative" process, not to "punish" her alleged attacker. 

USC is not the only school that appears to have a serious problem addressing violence against women. The feds (OCR) are also investigating Occidental College, Swarthmore College, the University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill, and the University of Colorado at Boulder for, like USC, allegedly failing to adequately respond to sexual assault. Meanwhile, Boston University's sexual assault problem remains in the headlines, the most recent being a student's personal piece, " It Happened to Me: I Was Raped at Boston University and the Student Newspaper Made a Joke of It."

Read more at Huffington Post

Kristen Gwynne is an associate editor and drug policy reporter at AlterNet.  Follow her on Twitter: @KristenGwynne

 
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