Charges dismissed in sex assault case

Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office has decided to not charge a UDM student who was apprehended after a criminal sexual assault was reported on the McNichols campus.

Maria Miller, a spokeswoman for the Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office, said Tuesday there was insufficient evidence to proceed with the case. She said prosecutors did not feel they could prove a court case beyond a reasonable doubt.

UDM Department of Public Safety (DPS) was called at 2 a.m. Sunday, Aug. 30, after a female student alleged that she was sexually assaulted between 1 and 1:30 a.m. by a male student in one of the residence halls.

The man was taken into custody that day by Detroit Police but then released.

According to Letitia Williams, chief of DPS, criminal charges against him have been dismissed.

A Title IX complaint, however, remains active on campus, Williams noted, and a no-contact order, issued by the Dean of Students Office, between the two students also is in effect.

The Varsity News spoke with the young woman who made the complaint. Neither student’s name nor identifying characteristics are being used in this story.

The woman said she met the man at a party near the campus on Saturday, Aug. 29.

“He was basically kind of hitting on me that night,” she said.

Later when they were talking, he proposed going back to her room, the woman said. She was reluctant and wasn’t sure what to do, she said.

She told police that the man grabbed her hand at the party and said, “Let’s go.” She contends that he forced himself on her in the room.

Afterward, the woman said she told a friend what had happened. She and a friend told resident advisors, who called DPS who contacted Detroit Police.

The next day, Monday, Aug. 31, the student, along with her family, went to the Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office. She learned that the case would not be prosecuted.

Further, she said she has not recently heard from any UDM official.

“It’s kind of ridiculous to me,” she said.

Monica Williams, Dean of Students at UDM, couldn’t comment on this specific incident due to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).

However, she said that the university has 60 days to complete a Title IX investigation upon learning of the incident.

Both students remain on campus.

“As far as things go, I think I’m okay… I’ve been trying to get more into classes, trying to distract myself,” the female student said.

She said she hasn’t thought about leaving UDM.

“I have met more good and kind people who have supported me through this,” she said. “… I wouldn’t want to leave because I’m trying to get comfortable and starting to meet more people, getting involved, etc., and I came here for an education and that’s the bottom line.”

She said she plans to follow up with university officials.

Contact info for complaints

There are several different reporting channels at UDM when an incident of any nature occurs.

Students can contact DPS, Campus Security Authority or Students of Concern.

Additionally, Chief Williams encourages all UDM students to program two phone numbers in their phone that can be accessed by one touch. Those numbers are (313) 993-1234 and 911.