Berkeley PD investigate sex assault reports at fraternities

Byby Elissa Harrington KGO logo
Thursday, October 2, 2014

BERKELEY, Calif. (KGO) -- Police in Berkeley are investigating sexual assaults at frat houses. The victims say the attacks took place on Saturday, but students are just finding out about them now.

Students are disappointed with the way this is being handled. They want the university to be more transparent and forward with information, especially when it involves their safety.

Students at UC Berkeley are out on a balmy Thursday night and many heading to parties on the south side of campus in the same area where the alleged sexual assaults took place sometime this past Saturday. At least two of the alleged attacks happened at fraternities.

Some students said they were left in the dark and that they received no word of the attacks from campus officials.

"I would expect to have received a notification from the university, but I haven't received anything as well regarding any sort of sexual assault and we actually live on Frat Row, so it's very concerning," UC Berkeley student Melissa Candell said.

Police have not yet made any arrests in this case yet. Campus police would not talk on-camera and the Berkeley police also declined ABC7 News' request for an interview.

A Berkeley police spokeswoman said via email, "Sexual assault investigations are complex, and demand sensitive and professional investigation."

The names of the fraternity houses involved are not being released. People who live in that area say it gets busy on the weekends.

"I don't live in a fraternity, but I live on Frat Row. You just have people walking around, lots of drinking, stumbling around. You usually have cops posted though especially on Channing Circle," UC Berkeley student Lorenzo Galdon said.

Kimberly Schwartz says she always walks in groups. She said, "We carry around a rape whistle or pepper spray."

Monday, Gov. Jerry Brown signed the "yes means yes" sexual consent law to change the way campuses deal with rape allegations. People agreeing to have sex must say the word yes. Anyone under the influence cannot give consent.