On July 25, an East Carolina University student filed a report with the university police alleging she was sexually assaulted by two men in an off-campus area while she was on her way to a workout. The woman’s actions caused officials to launch an extensive investigation into her sexual assault allegations.
The investigation spanned two-and-a-half weeks, absorbing a great many resources of the campus police. Besides the time and effort of the officers who participated in the investigation, the department beefed up security on campus, adding more patrols to protect pedestrians and students in that area.
After the initial incident report, the university police issued a campus-wide alert about the alleged assault. Staff, faculty and students were urged to be hyper-vigilant, unnecessarily, as it turned out. The false report also changed many people’s perception that the area was relatively safe.
The filing of any false report degrades the ability of law enforcement to protect public safety and wastes resources better spent elsewhere. False reports can also cause citizens to take incident alerts less seriously in the future.
These officers were dedicated to performing a thorough investigation to ensure the safety of students and the public. The time-consuming, expensive investigation only came to an end when the student admitted her complaint was false. She has now been charged with two counts of filing a false police report.
The student has given no explanation for why she falsely claimed to have been the victim of a sexual assault. Lack of maturity may be at issue, as the student is only seventeen years old. She was a top pick for the East Carolina University women’s basketball team. Her status with the team in light of this event is unknown at this time.
Source: The Daily Reflector, “ECU: Assault report was fabricated,” Michael Abramowitz, Aug. 11, 2011