Documents: Worcester Polytechnic Institute Alleges Victim Partly Responsible for Rape | NECN
Massachusetts

Massachusetts

The latest news from around the state

Documents: Worcester Polytechnic Institute Alleges Victim Partly Responsible for Rape

The woman's lawyers say the school's argument is an attempt to harass and intimidate her

    processing...

    NEWSLETTERS

    The woman's lawyers say the school's argument is an attempt to harass and intimidate her (Published Tuesday, June 7, 2016)

    A Massachusetts school is alleging that a student who was raped while studying abroad in Puerto Rico is partially responsible because she was drinking that night and chose to follow a stranger onto a dark rooftop, according to recently filed court documents.

    Worcester Polytechnic Institute made the arguments in response to a civil suit filed last year in which the victim alleges that the college failed to provide a safe environment for students, The Boston Globe reports.

    The woman was assaulted by a security guard in April 2012 at a university-leased apartment building in Puerto Rico, where she was completing a research project.

    The school's attorneys argue the victim engaged in risky behavior including excessive drinking and disregarded training about how to protect herself from harm.

    A school spokeswoman told the Globe in a statement issued Monday that WPI takes students' well-being seriously and provided support to the victim and other students after the assault.

    In a statement provided to necn on Tuesday, school president Laurie Leshin said the language in the court documents was used by the school's then-insurance provider, and that "WPI has never and would never blame a victim for being raped."

    The woman's lawyers say the school's argument is an attempt to harass and intimidate her.


    Stay with necn for up-to-the-minute news and weather