Alleged Sexual Assault Involving USD Students

We’re learning new details tonight involving an alleged sexual assault involving University of South Dakota students.

The USD community is reacting to an alleged off-campus sexual assault involving students.

Student body president, Teagan McNary, says students are upset, but still feel safe.

“It’s upsetting, and I think it just shows that while we do a lot of training for the prevention and bystander reporting, we talk about consent a lot, I think it just show there’s always more than can be done,” McNary said.

All students are required to take an educational online sexual assault course each year, and while the course is technically mandatory for students, there are no consequences if someone doesn’t do it.

Student- athletes and Greek life members are required to undergo additional in-person training on sexual assault.

“Anybody that would have to go through that, it just makes me feel really upset,” said McNary. “I would never wish that upon anybody.”

Captain Chad Passick from the Vermillion Police Department says it’s too early to say whether or not alcohol is a factor in this case.

“The information that we have suggests it occurred inside a home,” said Passick.

 While the streets of Vermillion are a little uneasy with news of an alleged sexual assault, police want to assure everyone that they’ve identified the suspects.

“We’re confident that we have identified any and all suspects in the case and we’re confident that there is no lingering threat to the community,” said Passick.

Captain Passick acknowledges that sexual assault cases are never easy ones. While there is no immediate threat to the community, police will continue to investigate this case.  Police aren’t saying how many suspects or victims are involved.

“Sexual assaults can be very difficult,” said Passick. “We tread very carefully, trying to keep the victims’ best interests in mind.”

The police department says it provided additional resources to alleged victims. Counseling services are also available to students on campus.

 

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