For years, Avery's office had only reported cases that had been investigated by campus officials, records and interviews show.

Among those that weren't disclosed to the federal government were anonymous allegations filed online, a system the college set up in 2009 to encourage the reporting of sexual assaults. Occidental declined to disclose how many such reports have been made.

Avery has told faculty and administrators that there had been 34 sexual assault reports in 2012. The annual crime report issued in October shows seven for that year.

Avery declined to comment on the discrepancy. Tranquada, the college spokesman, said, "Clery reporting is clearly an area where we need to improve." It is possible that some of the alleged assaults do not meet federal reporting guidelines because they occurred off campus.

The federal complaints allege that the omissions were part of a deliberate effort by Avery and others to keep the reported number of assaults on campus low. Avery has told faculty she did not know she was required to disclose the anonymous reports, according to meeting minutes reviewed by The Times.

As administrators were uncovering the depth of the problems, faculty and student activists announced they would file a federal complaint against Occidental. Days later, officials added 15 new reports of sexual assault to the campus crime log, which is required under the Clery Act, records show.

Administrators gave contradictory accounts of why so many cases, some of them dating back years, had been added to the log.

"I understand that [these] came from an anonymous reporting form that we — the institution, bigger than me — now understand need to be included in our stats," Campus safety director Holly Nieto told the Occidental Weekly, a student newspaper. "So we caught up, if you will."

But Howard, the associate dean of students, said the reports were new complaints that had all been filed anonymously online in previous days.

The college has been noting anonymous complaints in the campus safety log ever since. But it has not been kept accurately, according to sociology professor Danielle Dirks, who filed eight reports in late March.

She identified them as sexual assaults, but when they were posted to the crime log days later, they were downgraded as sexual batteries, records show.

Later that month, Avery asked Occidental's general counsel Carl Botterud to encourage a group of male athletes to form a club, Occidental Men Against Rape, that would counter the activists on campus, records and interviews show.

The Athletic Department required each team to send two members to a meeting in the department's Trophy Room, records show. Botterud used crude language to encourage the men to make their voices heard.

“If the activists make you feel like your voice doesn't count, …'em,” two people who attended the meeting recall Botterud saying.

"I remember being confused why he was leading the meeting," recalled one student who attended. "He never said anything about being passionate about doing something about sexual assault."

In May, the faculty overwhelmingly approved votes of no confidence in Avery and Botterud. Over the summer, Botterud stepped down from his position after an outside attorney investigated his role in handling sexual assaults on campus.

"My decision to leave the college had nothing to do with that investigation," Botterud said in an interview. "There were people in the community who were very angry with me, and I believe my continued presence would have been a distraction and detrimental to the institution."

The woman who said she was raped in the fraternity has dropped out of Occidental and was one of at least 10 alleged victims to whom the college paid undisclosed sums to avoid lawsuits. The student she accused was found responsible and expelled, records show.

jason.felch@latimes.com