If it feels like sex crimes on college campuses keep making the news, you’re right.
More and more students are coming forward reporting rapes and sexual assaults.
But perhaps the one voice you haven’t heard yet is his:
“I called my ex-boyfriend and when he came over he ended up raping me,” John Kelly said.
Same-sex assaults on college campuses.
“My body shut down, my mind shut down,” John said. “It was by far the hardest thing I ever had to go through.”
The second hardest, John would come to learn, was trying to get justice.
“One of the deans here at Tufts told me that because I’m a male there was no way I could have been raped. I was told that because it was a same sex assault between two male bodied people that the school didn’t know how to deal with it,” he said.
Tufts University won’t talk about individual cases but did say “addressing sexual misconduct” is among the “highest priorities” and that it strives to make “policies inclusive of our entire community.”
The school’s investigation into John’s 2012 rape took 4 months, twice as long as the department of education recommends.
“It’s hard to go to class when you’re always terrified you’re going to run into him,” Kelly said.
7News found something equally terrifying. Experts believe in more than half of all sex assaults at colleges, the accused attacker stays on campus, stays in classes and stays in their dorms.
“I think a lot of people would suggest an expulsion comes with the territory of if you violated this code of conduct for a rape or sex assault but it’s not always the case,” Colby Bruno, from the Victim Rights Law Center, said. “The people on your campus think that people just get away with rape.”
A lot of the time campus sex cases don’t get prosecuted and that leaves only the universities to pass out discipline.
Some college advocates say it’s not the school’s place to act as a court of law.
“The goal of the student conduct process is to educate students, let them learn from their mistakes,” Laura Bennett, from the Association for Student Conduct Administration, said. “We try not to issue punishments, we try to be educational.”
In the cases where students are expelled, the reason they were kicked out of the school isn’t required to be on their transcript, so they then can transfer to another college, start fresh without the new schools or new students knowing.
John Kelly has used his own experience and testified before congress and his ex-boyfriend has been expelled.
“We need inclusive definitions of rape,” he said.
Talking at the White House and helping write regulations both nationally and for Tufts, so that what happened to him really does serve as a college lesson.
“Since I didn’t fit with that perfect image of a survivor, it made achieving any form of justice so much more difficult,” he said.
For more information about the Victim Rights Law Center visit their website here: http://www.victimrights.org/