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Special Alert: Reports of Sexual Assault

Nov. 12, 2014

The Office of Safety and Security is informing the campus community of two [unrelated] reports of sexual misconduct. Each incident of sexual assault has been reported to the Oberlin Police Department.

A student reported a sexual assault that occurred during the weekend of October 31 through November 1, 2014 in a residential hall setting. The encounter was not consensual, as the student conveyed consent was declined. A sexual assault then occurred.

A student reported a sexual assault that occurred during fall Semester 2013 in a residential apartment on campus. Due to the level of alcohol consumption by parties involved, the encounter was non-consensual as there was no ability for the reporting person to give consent.

While not all crimes can be prevented, and the below advice may not be specific for these incidents, please be reminded to take special care for your own safety and for the safety of others, and to be well-acquainted with the requirements of Oberlin’s student conduct policies, including the Sexual Misconduct Policy. Additional recommendations include:

• Make a plan to attend and leave social functions with responsible and trusted friends who share your own values and will not
change their plans once in attendance. Be vigilant and use your common sense in being aware that alcohol can make a situation go downhill quickly. As support for your community, report situations that pose a risk for persons present. • Be aware that alcohol and drugs may compromise one’s ability to recognize whether another person is incapacitated or otherwise unable to provide effective consent. If someone appears to be incapacitated, do not attempt sexual contact with
that person. Consent is always required. If you plan to consume alcohol to the point where your judgment about someone else’s ability to consent may be compromised, ask friends to remain with you so that you to not engage in sexual
misconduct. • Do not use drugs or alcohol to loosen another’s inhibitions or as an excuse to rationalize your own abusive behavior toward someone else later. Voluntary intoxication is not an excuse for unacceptable behavior under the law or under College regulations. Administering drugs to another by any means, including deception, is a felony crime including the penalty of mandatory prison time. • As a bystander, be ready to intervene when it is safe to do so. Observe how others are acting or interacting, and decide if you have a responsibility to provide a safe form of assistance, including reporting concerning behavior to Safety and
Security. If you see someone that might be in a bad situation or you just want to check in with them, DO! As a support for your community, report situations that may pose a risk for persons present. • Seek assistance when needed--The College Medical Amnesty Policy allows a student at medical risk to seek medical attention for oneself or another for intoxication or overdose without formal College sanction for illegal use or possession of alcohol or other drugs when College policies have been violated in conjunction with intoxication or overdose. • When at social functions, do not return to a drink left unattended; do not drink from a community container such as a punch bowl, or accept drinks from individuals you have just met or do not know well. Make a plan to attend and leave social functions with responsible and trusted friends who share your own values and will not change their plans once in attendance. • Be observant about any attempt to add unknown or unwanted substances to publicly available refreshments. If you observe such conduct, alert the hosts, discard the food or beverages, or add a visible deterrent such as throwing trash into the
refreshments to prevent others from consuming them.

Seek assistance from the Oberlin Police if there is an emergency: Dial 9-1-1, or dial directly 440-774-1061. On campus, Safety and Security can be contacted at 440-775-8911. Contact Safety and Security for a safety escort if you need assistance leaving a social function by calling (440) 775-8444 or Ext. 58444 from on campus. RideLine transportation is available 9 pm to 2 am during the semester by calling 440-775-RIDE.