Crime hits close to home

One rape was reported at Grambling State University last month, although rumors of serial sexual abuse circulated on campus recently. The incident took place in Freshman Village. According to police records, the victim opened her door to a male. He asked for a female who was not there.

The victim and her attacker went to her room and conversed, the report read. It was there that the two engaged in sexual activities.

The young woman told the attacker that she was a virgin, according to the police report. It also stated that the male did not stop when asked by the victim.
The incident occurred at 4 a.m., said Grambling State University Police Chief Craig Nance.

“If someone is knocking on your door at any time and you can’t see out of the peephole, call the police,” said Nance.
Nance said he was glad to dispel myths about alleged rampant rapes at Grambling State University.
Only two documented sexual assaults occurred last year, Nance said. He said that one of the cases wasn’t substantiated.
Experts extracted good DNA from last month’s victim and took it to Shreveport, said Nance. He said he is confident that the rapist will be identified if he is already in an agency database.

Last month’s rape stimulated discussions of collegiate rapes. Sexual offenders must be reported and prosecuted because many of them continue the cycle.

Repeat sexual offenders account for a substantial number of assaults on college campuses, according to a report from The Center for Public Integrity, a nonprofit investigative journalism organization.

The report told the story of Elton Yarbrough from Texas A&M. Yarbrough is now in prison and will remain there until at least 2015, under a felony sexual assault conviction.
Five women, four of whom were Texas A&M students, testified to being raped or sexually assaulted by him during a three-year period.

Students must press charges, to prevent future assaults, Administrative Coordinator of the GSU Police Department Sonya Rushing said.

Grambling State University has rape kits on hand and sends evidence to a crime lab following sexual assault. Student counseling services are also offered in the event of an alleged rape, Rushing said.

For every instance of reported abuse, numerous victims don’t report. Estimates from The Rape Abuse and Incest Network Web site www.rainn.org state that 60 percent of sexual assaults remain unreported and college students are four times more likely to be raped.

Survivors of sexual violence are susceptible to anxiety, suicide attempts and are more likely to engage in risky sexual behavior, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention web site.

Victims of sexual abuse are encouraged to call the Grambling State University Police Department at 318-274-2222.
For student counseling services, victims should call 318-274-3338 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. For national assistance, victims can call 1-800-656-HOPE.