VCU Alert

On-campus emergency: 828-1234
Off-campus emergency: 911

Current advisory

Notice of Crime - Sexual Assault – Off Campus MPC

8/25/2016 12:22 pm

In compliance with the provisions of the federal Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act of 1988 Virginia Commonwealth University is giving notice of a Sexual Assault.

On the evening of August 24, 2016, a sexual assault was reported to VCU Police. The incident took place in the early morning hours of August 24, 2016 at a residence in the 00 block of South Morris Street. The survivor had recently met the suspect.

VCU Police remind members of the community of the following:

•    Engaging in any type of sexual activity without the voluntary, informed and active consent of your partner is sexual assault.
•    Sexual assault is non-consensual activity, ranging from unwanted touching to forced intercourse, which can include sexual contact with someone who is impaired by alcohol, drugs, or any other intoxicant that impairs the person’s judgment.
•    Alcohol and drugs may impair judgment, making it difficult to notice unsafe situations and intervene to help others. If either party is incapacitated by alcohol or drugs, consent cannot be given.
•    Always seek verbal, sober, clear consent. Immediately stop sexual advances if the other person indicates no interest or if they say "no." Consent to one sexual act does not imply consent to another. The absence of a “no” does not mean “yes.”
•    Never pressure or coerce someone into engaging in sexual activity.
•    Approximately 75% of rapes are committed by acquaintances (https://rainn.org/).
•    If you are ever in a situation where you are unsure or scared call VCU Police (828-1234) immediately.
•    If you witness a situation that appears unsafe or makes you uncomfortable, intervene if it's safe to do so or go to a safe area and call for help. Bystander intervention is a known tool to help to prevent campus sexual assault. We encourage the VCU community to download and use the free LiveSafe mobile safety application on iOS and Android smart phones.
•    Be on the lookout for suspicious people who may attempt to isolate someone who is intoxicated or has been drinking.

Be aware of tactics used:

Tactics used to commit sexual assault include intruding into someone’s personal space physically, isolation and “feeding” or encouraging alcohol and/or other drug consumption.

Although alcohol is the most commonly used drug to facilitate sexual assault, other tactics include adding drugs, such as GHB, Ketamine, or Rohypnol, to a person’s drink to incapacitate them. GHB, also known as Liquid Ecstasy, relaxes a person’s inhibitions, causes drowsiness, and may result in a loss of consciousness. Ketamine, also known as Special K, makes a person feel as if they are separated from their body and detached from reality. Rohypnol causes a person to become drowsy, dizzy, and lack motor control and coordination. Prescription drugs, such as benzodiazepines or anti-anxiety medications, are also sometimes used to incapacitate an individual.

Using or requesting the use of birth control is not the same as consenting to sexual activity.

Develop a safety plan with friends. Help each other to stay safe by sticking together and making sure someone does not become isolated. Use safety apps, such as Circle of 6 and LiveSafe to notify others if you feel unsafe, isolated or need assistance.

•    Be alert and aware at all times when you are with acquaintances.
•    Be aware of your surroundings and trust your instincts.
•    Report all suspicious people and circumstances to the VCU Police Department.

VCU’s Sexual Misconduct/Violence and Sex/Gender Discrimination Policy:

VCU will take prompt and appropriate action to eliminate Prohibited Conduct, prevent its recurrence and remedy its effects.  Prohibited Conduct includes sexual assault, sexual exploitation, partner or relationship violence (including stalking), other sex or gender-based discrimination, retaliation, and complicity.  For more information on the definition of Prohibited Conduct and the related University procedures, refer to the Sexual Misconduct/Violence and Sex/Gender Discrimination Policy.

The University will not pursue disciplinary action based on disclosure of personal consumption of drugs or alcohol where such disclosures are made in connection with a good faith report of prohibited conduct under university policy or an individual’s cooperation in an administrative investigation. 

The University will take remedial and protective measures to protect a Complainant and facilitate the Complainant’s continued access to university employment or education programs and activities.  These measures may include, but are not limited to, no-contact directives, residence modifications, and academic modifications and support.

If you are the victim of a sexual assault many options are available to you; retaliation for reporting is strictly prohibited.

If you have been the victim of a sexual assault, you are not alone. There are people at VCU, and in the Richmond community, who are here to support you. We encourage you to report to VCU Police and the university’s Title IX office. After speaking with a specially trained officer, a criminal investigation can begin; you have the right to participate or decline to participate in a criminal investigation.

Reporting & Support Resources:

VCU Police

Emergency #: (804) 828-1234 (Ext. 8-1234 from a VCU campus phone)
Non-Emergency #: (804) 828-1196

Web: Police.vcu.edu

Cpl. Tricia Mozingo, VCU Police Victim-Witness Specialist

(804) 828-6356
E-Mail: tlmozingo@vcu.edu

 

If you have general questions about the criminal justice process, even if you are not ready to report, you may contact Cynthia Micklem, Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney for the City of Richmond, at (804) 646-8685 or by e-mailing Cynthia.Micklem@richmondgov.com.

Medical Care

Survivors can go to the VCU Medical Center, or other local hospitals, for medical care including STI testing and treatment and pregnancy prevention. A trained forensic nurse is also available to conduct a Physical Evidence Recovery Kit (P.E.R.K. exam). This special medical exam is given to people who have been sexually assaulted to collect evidence that may be helpful in the investigation and prosecution of the sexual assault, if survivors choose to do so.  P.E.R.K. exams are provided at no cost. If you think you may want to report the assault to police, the sooner you have evidence collected, the better.

Within 72 hours: VCU Medical Center's forensic nursing office, 1250 E. Marshall St., (804) 628-0623.

After 72 hours: University Student Health Services, 1300 W. Broad St., Suite 2200, (804) 828-8828

Forensic nursing services are also available at these facilities: St. Mary’s Hospital, Richmond Community Hospital, St. Francis Watkins Centre, Memorial Regional Medical Center, St. Francis Medical Center. To reach forensic nurses at these hospitals call: (804) 281-8184 (Emergency) or Non-Emergency (804) 281-8574.

If you are not ready to report, or are unsure, please consider contacting a confidential counselor or victim advocate for yourself or a friend:

VCU Counseling Services:  (804) 828-6200 (Monroe Park Campus) or (804) 828-3964 (Medical Campus)

(Monday – Friday: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.) To speak with a counselor after hours, call (804) 828-1234 and ask to be connected to an on-call counselor. Services are confidential. Web: Students.vcu.edu/counseling

 

The Wellness Resource Center: To explore your options for reporting, counseling, support groups and other resources, including sexual assault and domestic violence services, you can contact VCU’s Wellness Resource Center (The Well) to speak with a victim advocate:  (804) 828-9355. Services are confidential. Web: http://www.thewell.vcu.edu/

 

The Greater Richmond Regional Hotline:  (804) 612-6126. Services are confidential.

LGBTQ Partner Abuse & Sexual Assault Helpline:  (866) 356-6998. Services are confidential.
(Monday - Friday, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.)

YWCA of Richmond:  (804) 612-6126. Services are confidential.
Web: www.ywcarichmond.org/

University Safety Case Manager:   VCU’s Threat Assessment Team assesses and responds accordingly to any threatening behaviors and dangerous incidents involving students, faculty or staff before escalation to violence. To reach the university’s safety case manager, call (804) 837-8753. For emergencies, call VCU Police: (804) 828-1234. Web: http://www.students.vcu.edu/safety/

 

VCU Equity and Access Services leads, coordinates, and supports civil rights compliance, including Title IX, for the university community: (804) 828-1347. Web: http://www.equity.vcu.edu/

 

Laura Walsh Rugless, Title IX Coordinator

(804) 828-6404

E-mail: lrugless@vcu.edu or titleix@vcu.edu

 

Matthew Meneely, Deputy Title IX Coordinator for Investigations

(804) 827-8319

E-mail: mmeneely@vcu.edu

 

Tammi Slovinsky, Deputy Title IX Coordinator for Students

(804) 827-1963

E-mail: tslovinsky@vcu.edu

 

Cathleen C. Burke, Deputy Title IX Coordinator for Employees

(804) 828-3248

E-mail: ccburke@vcu.edu

 

Sofia A. Hiort-Wright, Deputy Title IX Coordinator for Athletics

(804) 828-2184

E-mail: shiort@vcu.edu

 

Confidential Ethics and Compliance Helpline: (888) 242-6022 (toll free)                                                    Web: https://secure.ethicspoint.com/domain/media/en/gui/21805/index.html

VCU Integrity and Compliance Office, Audit and Compliance Services, Policy Program

Web: http://www.policy.vcu.edu/

If you want to get involved in ending violence and supporting students who have been impacted by violence, you can contact the following VCU student groups:


Sexual Assault & Violence Education-Students (SAVES): (804) 828-9355
Men Against Violence (MAV): (804) 828-9355

Students, faculty and staff are encouraged to share this safety information with other members of the community and are asked to be aware of their surroundings. Use the campus RamSafe transportation service between the hours of 5 p.m. and 8 a.m. by calling (804) 828-SAFE (7233) or visit http://www.ramsafe.vcu.edu.

Students, faculty, staff and citizens of Richmond are asked to report all suspicious persons or incidents, however minor, to VCU Police immediately.

Anyone with information pertaining to this crime can contact the VCU Police Department 24/7. For emergencies call (804) 828-1234. For non-emergency tips call (804) 828-1196. You can also download the LiveSafe mobile safety application for free on a smart phone and submit tips, screen shots, photos and videos directly to VCU Police; tips are monitored 24/7.

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Preparedness

It is essential to be prepared for emergency situations and to be cognizant of ways to prevent crime and avoid dangerous situations.

The Virginia Commonwealth University Police Department would like to remind students, in particular, to keep personal safety in mind. There are certain things you need to be aware of as residents of an urban environment, as crimes may occur in our community.

The best defense is to be prepared and to take responsibility for your own safety and for that of your friends and fellow students. Be aware of your surroundings at all times, walk with a friend and make use of RamSafe, VCU’s security escort service. For additional safety tips from the VCU Police, please see www.police.vcu.edu and follow them on Facebook and Twitter.

Students, faculty and staff are encouraged to read VCU’s Annual Security and Fire Safety Report Get Adobe Reader and to share this information with other members of the community.

VCU is dedicated to promoting a safe and secure environment for learning, living, working or visiting.