Posts Tagged ‘Laura Dunn’

Alleged Sexual Assault: “UW…acted with deliberate indifference”

February 25, 2010

This will be big news tomorrow, and going into the future. From a report released on the website of the Center of Public Integrity:

It took nine months in 2005 and 2006 for the University of Wisconsin at Madison to contemplate, then reject filing disciplinary charges against a crew team member accused of rape.

Enough time for the accused student to start his fourth year at the university, compete in another rowing season, and glide into another spring as a celebrated college athlete.

Enough time, too, for an enraged encounter with his accuser, Laura Dunn, at a fraternity party. “He started threatening me,” said Dunn. “When he hit the wall, he used his whole forearm, and just slammed within inches of my head.”

The story:

Laura Dunn was a member of the crew team, too, during her freshman year at the University of Wisconsin. She left the next year after the alleged rape by two teammates, she said, made the already-slender athlete lose weight and sleep. But even as her crew career fell apart, she didn’t report anything to campus authorities for more than a year.

The Universities response:

The university said a police investigation and the alleged victim’s objections to one of her investigating officers accounted for the delay. The criminal investigation, too, ended without charges against the accused student, who said Dunn willingly participated in sexual activity.

The early assessment:

“UW … acted with deliberate indifference,” wrote former Security On Campus, Inc. legal advocate Alice Purple. “The harassment that Ms. Dunn was forced to undergo was so severe, pervasive and objectively offensive that it deprived her of educational benefits by forcing her to quit the crew team and causing her grades to fall.”

I just wanted to get this up for now. More commentary to come tomorrow.

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