TIMELY WARNING – Off Campus Sex Offense – Fondling
In compliance with the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act (the “Clery Act”), 20 U.S.C. 1092 (f), the College of Charleston issues timely notices to notify the campus community of Clery Act crimes or other serious incidents that the College determines represent a serious and ongoing threat to the campus. The College may distribute timely notices using a variety of means, including emails, text messages, flyers, and website announcements posted on the Campus Safety website https://blogs.cofc.edu/publicsafety/category/community-notification/
In compliance with the Jeanne Clery Act, the Department of Public Safety is informing the College of Charleston campus community of a sex offense.
Incident: Sex Offense – Fondling
Time: 9:05PM – 9:10PM
Reported to: Charleston City Police Department and College Of Charleston Department of Public Safety
Report # 18-01108
Location: Calhoun Street/Pitt Street, Charleston, SC
Suspects’ status: At-Large
Incident description: Female victim was walking west on Calhoun Street near Pitt Street and was approached by a male suspect. The male suspect grabbed the victim’s breast and then ran to a dark gray or black pickup truck which was parked on Pitt Street just south of Calhoun Street. The suspect fled the area southbound on Pitt Street towards Bull Street.
This suspect may have been involved in a simple assault of a female victim in the area of Pitt Street and VanDerHorst Street at approximately 8:50PM.
Suspect Description: White Male; Early to Mid 20s; 5’06”- 5’08”; Heavy Set; Dark Curly Hair; Mustache/Beard; Long Sleeve Brown Flannel Shirt; and Dark Color Pants.
Important Message: It is important to note that the victim/survivor is never the cause of the criminal offense. The College does not tolerate this behavior.
Acquaintances, friends, or current/former romantic partners may assume that since they have had prior intimate encounters, they do not require consent for future sexual acts. Each sexual act requires verbal consent. Tactics used by a respondent known to the complainant may include intruding into the complainant’s personal space physically, though seemingly accidental touches or casual hugs or touches. The respondent may play on the complainant’s emotional vulnerability or empathy by “sharing” personal information or stories so that he/she lowers their defenses. The complainant may feel uneasy and uncomfortable, but the respondent assures them that nothing is wrong and continues their assault, ignoring requests to stop.
On college campuses, alcohol plays a large role in sexual assault. An attacker, often someone the person knows, may encourage or force a complainant to drink alcohol and become intoxicated or may take advantage of a complainant’s intoxication to forcibly assault him/her without consent. Respondents will seek out venues where intoxicated potential victims are likely to be, such as parties and bars. Some will put drugs, such as GHB, Ketamine, or Rohypnol, into a person’s drink to incapacitate them. GHB, also known as Liquid Ecstasy, relaxes a person’s inhibitions, causing drowsiness, and may result in a loss of consciousness. Ketamine, also known as Special K, makes a person feel as if they are separated from their body and detached from reality. Rohypnol, or Roofies, causes a person to become drowsy, dizzy, and lack motor control and coordination. Respondents may also use pressure to try drugs as part of a social event before luring them away from the group.
Approximately 66% of sexual assaults are committed by acquaintances. To reduce the risk of similar crimes from happening, we recommend that everyone familiarize themselves with what constitutes sexual assault and, as a community, be vigilant in stopping it. For example:
- Always seek consent. Stop your sexual advances if the other person indicates no interest or if they say “no”. Engaging in any type of sexual activity without the explicit consent of your partner is sexual assault. If either party is under the influence of alcohol, consent cannot be given.
- The absence of a “no” is not a “yes.”
- Avoid engaging in, supporting, or encouraging sexual harassment.
- Do NOT use threats or coercion to engage in sexual activity.
- Call for help if you witness a violent crime.
- Do not take advantage of someone who is passed out, incoherent or otherwise incapacitated.
Public Safety is available to provide escorts on-campus and the Cougar Shuttle (888.960.2227) is available for off-campus transportation on the downtown peninsula seven nights a week from 11:00 P.M. – 3:00 A.M., during the fall and spring semesters. For addition safety tips, visit http://publicsafety.cofc.edu/staying-safe/index.php.
Get Involved and Make a Difference: The College encourages the prompt reporting of all crimes, On-campus contact Public Safety (843.953.5611), and off-campus (911).
Oftentimes, students are present when a crime is about to happen and bystander intervention is one method students may use to help prevent a crime from happening. Learn how to develop this skill and safely intervene. Contact the Office of Victim Services at 843.953.2273.
Victim Assistance: Enrolled College of Charleston students who become victims of serious crime are encouraged to get victim assistance by contacting the Office of Victim Services (843.953.2273). Comprehensive services, including assistance with missed classes/academic disruption, are available regardless of the incident location, or if the student elected to file an official report, or not.
If you have any information regarding the crime indicated above, please contact:
City of Charleston Police Department
Crime Stoppers: (Anonymous Reporting 554-1111)
Crime Stoppers: (Anonymous Reporting 554-1111)
College of Charleston Campus Police
Non-Emergency: 953-5609 (Administrative Line)
Crime Action Line: (Anonymous Reporting) 953-4998
Silent Witness: http://publicsafety.cofc.edu/contact-us/silent-witness/index.php