Academic institutions dealing with reports of sexual assault on campus must report those allegations to the police, said Sen. Dawson Hodgson, candidate for Rhode Island Attorney General. “Law enforcement officials are equipped to investigate, evaluate, and prosecute these crimes in a manner that Universities simply are not,” Hodgson commented. “Allowing colleges – no matter how well intentioned- to determine the course of action puts sexual assault victims at risk.”
Hodgson’s comments came after incumbent Peter Kilmartin expressly refused to support mandatory reporting of sexual assault allegations on college campuses. Hodgson used Kilmartin’s own words on the issue to point out the fallacy of the incumbent’s position. “Peter is quoted as saying, ‘the earlier law enforcement gets involved, the better the odds that we’ll have a successful prosecution.’ ”
“I agree,” said Hodgson, “which is why I’ll push for mandatory reporting. Peter says he won’t. That’s wrong….and dangerous.”
The recent allegations relating to Brown University athletes, where Kilmartin's office failed to secure any indictment, highlight this danger. “A proactive Attorney General’s office that facilitates communication between victims, law enforcement and colleges will ultimately make campuses safer. I propose to do just that,” Hodgson said, “throughout my entire term in office and not just during election season.”
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