By Morgan Harlan | Staff Writer
Two rapes, one sexual assault and one case of fondling have been reported in the last 10 days, according to the Baylor crime and fire log. All of the cases are being handled by the Title IX office.
This is in addition to the five rape allegations The Lariat reported on in the last two weeks.
All of the reported incidents occurred near, but not on, Baylor’s campus. One of the alleged rapes occurred in August 2017 in the 1100 block of Speight Ave. and was reported to the crime log on Feb. 6, approximately a year and a half after the alleged rape occurred. The other alleged rape occurred in November 2018 in the 800 block of James Ave. and was reported to the crime log on Feb. 6.
In addition to the reported rapes, a reported sexual assault and reported fondling incident were entered into the crime log on Feb. 8. The alleged sexual assault occurred in August 2017 in the 2000 Block of S. Fifth Street. The alleged fondling incident occurred in October 2016, over two years prior to the report.
The Clery Act defines sexual assault as an offense that meets the definition of rape, fondling, incest or statutory rape. Fondling is the touching of the private body parts of another person for the purpose of sexual gratification, without the consent of the victim.
The statute of limitations for sexual assault for adults in Texas is within 10 years after the crime is committed. According to The Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network, there are two circumstances in which there is no time limit for an offense against an adult in Texas: If probable cause exists that the defendant has committed the same offense or a similar sexual offense against five or more victims, or if during the investigation DNA is collected that does not match the victim or any other person whose identity is readily ascertainable.
Three of these four reports made since Feb. 6 were regarding an alleged incident that happened over 18 months ago.
According to Tonya Hudson, a Baylor media spokesperson, “While the University cannot speculate as to why a complainant decides when to report a Title-IX related offense, we urge students to report when they feel comfortable so that we can provide support and inform them of the numerous resources available such as the Counseling Center, University Chaplain, Title IX and the Baylor Police Department.”
The incidents were all reported through CSA, campus security authority. Campus security members include members of the Baylor Police Department, an official of an institution who has significant responsibility for student and campus activities, any individual or individuals who have responsibility for campus security but who do not constitute a campus police department, and other figures in the Baylor community who have a responsibility for campus security. Some examples of campus security members include Moody Library security staff and Campus Living and Learning safety officers.
According to the Baylor University Compliance and Risk Services, “CSAs are only obligated to report Clery Act qualifying crimes which occurred on campus, in public areas bordering campus and in certain non-campus buildings owned or controlled (leased) by the University.” In addition, if the complainant does not wish to contact the police the CSA will need to complete a Baylor Police Department CSA report Form for all Clery qualifying crimes.
“We understand that the reporting party, or complainant, may need time to decide how to proceed whether that’s through a Title IX investigation, law enforcement involvement, counseling or other additional support options,” Hudson said. “The recovery and healing process is different for everyone. We want to be respectful as they decide the best path forward.”
All of the alleged crimes are currently being investigated by the Title IX office, and the details of the cases are confidential.