No arrest made in rape case

Kandace Sebastian

Police are still investigating a reported rape that occurred between 9 p.m Saturday and 12:47 a.m. Sunday in Barnes-Campbell Hall.

The female juvenile student was visiting a male resident of Barnes-Campbell Hall at the time of the incident, said campus police Capt. Mike Wallace.

The incident was reported at 12:47 a.m. by Barnes resident assistant Tony Simms.

No arrest has been made at this time, but campus police have a suspect.

The last rape reports on campus were in November 2002 in Meredith Hall and October 2002 in Northeast Hall.

Wallace said that students who are victims of rape should contact campus police immediately to report the assault.

“Time is critical; our first interest of concern will be the well-being of the victim,” Wallace said. “The longer they wait, the more difficult it is to resolve the incident.”

Betsy Pierce, outreach coordinator for the Counseling and Testing Center, said such incidents are often unreported because the victim is ashamed and would like to keep the incident private.

“I would encourage a person to get help, do not keep it bottled up,” Pierce said.

The center offers a free confidential service to students and counseling sessions to discuss and work through emotional issues.

Pierce said students can call and make an appointment, but if the incident is a crisis they would be seen immediately.

Pierce said talking to someone about a rape incident – at the counseling center on campus or any other counseling facility – is often beneficial.

“The benefits would include working through the trauma,” Pierce said. “A person may never get over it, but they learn to cope with the shame, anger and grief associated with rape.”

Reach Kandace Sebastian at [email protected]