No evidence rape happened at University of Virginia fraternity, cops say

Police: No evidence assault described in Rolling Stone article happened at UVA fraternity house

The fraternity at the center of a controversial Rolling Stone article has been reinstated by the University of Virginia after police determined that the sexual assault at the center of the piece did not occur at the group's house.

Although investigators have not cleared the Phi Kappa Psi fraternity, Charlottesville Police Capt. Gary Pleasants told the Los Angeles Times that investigators haven't uncovered any evidence to indicate a sexual assault occurred at the fraternity house.

"We’re still investigating ... but there was no reason to keep this house under sanctions," he said.

In a statement issued Monday morning, the University of Virginia announced the decision to reinstate Phi Kappa Psi along with all other Greek organizations on campus.

The university suspended all of its fraternities and sororities in November after Rolling Stone published an article detailing a brutal gang rape of a woman identified only as "Jackie" at the Phi Kappa Psi house.

But in the weeks that followed, the article came under intense scrutiny, and reporting by the Washington Post and other media outlets uncovered several discrepancies in the victim's account. Rolling Stone later admitted the reporter did not try to contact "Jackie's" alleged rapists, and the fraternity said it did not hold a party on the night of the alleged attack, even though the victim claimed she was brought there for a party.

In the campus statement released Monday, Phi Kappa Psi President Stephen Scipione said his organization will use the fallout from the Rolling Stone controversy to improve safety protocols at future events.

“We believe that in the midst of this ordeal, there is an opportunity to move forward with important safety improvements. This has prompted us to take a closer look at ourselves and what role organizations like ours may play in this problem. It’s opened all of our eyes to the problem of sexual assault,” he said in the statement. “Now it’s time to do something about it."

Pleasants said his office has yet to determine if an attack occurred, and it has not ruled out the possibility that a Phi Kappa Psi member was involved in the alleged attack.

Follow @JamesQueallyLAT for breaking news


Copyright © 2016, Los Angeles Times