U.S. government investigating sexual abuse at USC

The U.S. Department of Education is investigating USC for failing to properly investigate claims of rape and sexual assault, officials said Monday.

The case is the latest in a series of investigations looking at sexual assault allegations at colleges and universities throughout the nation, including reported cases at Occidental College and Dartmouth University.

Occidental officials have hired two former sex crimes prosecutors to complete an extensive review of the university’s handling of sexual abuse cases.


The USC case was apparently triggered after students filed a complaint with federal officials in May. Over 100 students detailed cases in which they said USC officials mishandled rape and sexual assault cases.

In a written statement, Jody Shipper, USC’s Title IX coordinator and executive director of the Office of Equity and Diversity, confirmed that USC is being investigated by the Education Department’s Office of Civil Rights. She said opening such a probe “in no way implies that [the Office of Civil Rights] has made a determination with regard to their merits.”

Further, she said, USC looks forward to working with federal officials to address any concerns that arise.

“The university remains vigilant in addressing any issues promptly and fully as they arise,’ she said.

USC students plan to hold a news conference today.


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