Reporting a Sexual Offense

Any person who has been the victim of or witness to a sexual assault whether on or off campus can report directly to the Department of Campus Safety, a Residential Life staff member, any College official or the Keene Police Department.  This does not obligate the reporting person to proceed any further with an investigation or criminal charges.

Any person identified as a Campus Security Authority* as defined by the Clery Act who receives information regarding a sexual assault is obligated to share that information with the Director of Campus Safety for the purposes of Clery Act reporting and compliance.  This information can be shared without identifying the victim via a “Confidential Report of Sexual Assault” form available from Campus Safety and/or the Dean of Students Office.  This does not obligate the reporting person to talk with Campus Safety or to proceed any further with a report or investigation.  In most cases, students will be encouraged to talk with Campus Safety so they can be best advised on their options for proceeding with a college and/or police investigation.

*A Campus Security Authority is defined as an individual or organization to which student and employees should report criminal offenses or an official of an institution who has significant responsibility for student and campus activities, including  but not limited to, student housing, student discipline and campus judicial proceedings.  An official is defined as any person who has the authority and the duty to take action or respond to particular isses on behalf of the institution.  (U.S. Department of Education, 2011)

Confidentiality

The matrix below and the following section on Investigations of reports illustrates the most frequent offices to whom students report, what happens and with whom information is/isn’t shared.  Confusion is understandable when words such as “confidential” and “private” are not universally understood.

For the purposes of this policy, “confidential” means that the communication is legally privileged and that the individual the student is reporting to is not obligated to disclose the information to anyone else.  Generally, this standard is enjoyed by health professionals including counselors, and legal counsel.

“Private” means that the information will be shared only with those individuals with a need to know and that all necessary precautions will be taken to protect the identity of the victim and/or reporting student.

Options for On Campus Reporting of Sexual Assault, Harassment or Other Sex Crimes

What will happen? Counseling Center Center for Health & Wellness Campus Safety Res Life
Disclosure of report to others Confidential Confidential Private Private
Campus Safety Investigation No No Case specific Case specific
Keene Police Investigation No No Case specific Case specific
Limited Administrative Notice No No Yes Yes
Anonymous Notification to Campus Community No No Case specific Case specific
Medical Exam w/SANE* Nurse
(*Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner)
No No No No
Medical Services No Yes No No

Other Options for Reporting Sexual Assault

What will happen? Monadnock Ctr for Violence Prevention Keene Police Hospital
Confidential Yes No Yes
Campus Safety Investigation No Case specific No
Keene Police Investigation No Case specific Case specific
Limited Administrative Notice No Case specific No
Anonymous Alert to Students No Case specific No
Medical Exam w/SANE* Nurse
(*Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner)
No No Yes
Medical Services No No Yes

Cost for medical and other expenses
When a victim reports a sexual assault and seeks treatment at the hospital, the cost for medical expenses, including the physical examination, will be paid by the State of New Hampshire Office of the Attorney General if the assault is reported to the police.  Other expenses related to the assault may also be provided at no cost to the victim through the Victim’s Compensation Program http://www.doj.nh.gov/grants-management/victims-compensation-program/.  Specific information on expenses is available through the Monadnock Center for Violence Prevention.

Making a report to Campus Safety
Students may file a report of sexual assault with Campus Safety at any time regardless of where or when the incident occurred.  A report does not obligate a student to file charges either with the campus conduct office or with the relevant law enforcement agency.  Campus Safety will provide a same-sex officer to take the report if desired by the reporting student.  The reporting student may have one support person with them during any Campus Safety interviews or conversations.

Reports to Campus Safety of sexual assault (and other crimes and incidents) are noted in the daily log as required by federal law, however no personally identifiable information on the reporting individual is released. Campus Safety will also file an anonymous report of sexual assault with the Keene Police Department (or other department if the incident occurred in another jurisdiction).

In making the report, Campus Safety will:

  • Encourage the student to go to the hospital emergency room or the Center for Health and Wellness for medical services and offer to transport and/or accompany the student.
  • Provide resources to speak directly with the on-call counselor, an advocate from the Monadnock Center for Violence Prevention, or KSC’s Sexual Assault Victim Assistance provider for support in understanding, evaluating, and choosing among the services described in this protocol.
  • Inform the student of his/her rights and options including the options of filing charges through the student conduct system and Keene Police

Information shared with Campus Safety is shared with others only on a need to know basis.  A campus alert (without identifying the reporting individual) may be issued in cases in which the incident presents a clear danger to the campus community. Any and all actions taken, including the possible release of a warning to the community, will be designed to protect the reporting individual’s identity.

Investigations of reports
In most cases, the reporting individual has the option of deciding whether Campus Safety and/or the Keene Police will investigate the reported assault.  An investigation of the incident by Campus Safety would include questioning of all parties involved and gathering property potentially associated with the assault. Campus Safety will make all efforts to maintain the reporting individual’s anonymity during the investigation. The reporting individual’s identity will not be revealed to the press, discussed in Campus Safety radio transmissions that might be monitored or discussed in any public area.

If a reporting individual chooses to pursue a full investigation, he or she will have the option of filing charges when it has been completed. If the individual pursues disciplinary action through the college, the results of the investigation will be released to the coordinator of student conduct, hearing board members, the reporting individual, and the accused individual in compliance with federal law.

If the reporting individual decides to pursue criminal charges the results of the investigation will be released to the appropriate law enforcement agency and  County Attorney’s Office (CAO).  The appropriate proccecutor will determine whether the case will result in the bringing of criminal charges.

The health and safety of a reporting student is of primary concern.  Campus Safety will refer the student to appropriate campus offices for support with the possible changes in living arrangement for safety reasons and help in managing academic demands.