Sexual assault on College of Charleston campus

A College of Charleston student was sexually assaulted in her dorm on Saint Philip Street on Oct. 27, 2017 in the early hours of the morning.

What happened?

  • The victim answered a knock on her dorm room door, and the perpetrator forced his way inside and assaulted her.
  • The suspect fled the scene in an unknown direction and has yet to be identified or found.
  • No evidence of illegal entry of the residence hall has been found
  • The victim reported the incident to Public Safety, describing the suspect as a white male, college age, 5’8”-5’ 10,” with a medium build and dark brown hair
  • The victim worked with law enforcement officials to produce a sketch of the suspect

How is the College helping?

  • College of Charleston Public Safety is working with the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED), the main investigative agency on the case, and local police forces to follow up on any leads
  • SLED agent Thom Berry stated, “We have been following a number of leads, many of them coming from people that saw the sketch of the person we would like to interview.”
  • Officials have investigated over 50 tips and all video surveillance footage without much success
  • Campus Public Safety increased their presence on campus and in residence halls in an effort to prevent another assault.

How can I help?

  • Anyone with knowledge of the event or the suspect should contact SLED special agent Virginia Fowler (803.608.7435) or the College’s Public Safety Department (843.953.4998)
  • Witnesses can also fill out an anonymous silent witness form at http://publicsafety.cofc.edu/contact-us/silent-witness/index.php
  • Crime Stoppers of the Lowcountry accept any anonymous tips or information that may be valuable as well (843.554.111)
  • A substantial reward is being offered to anyone with information

What are ways to prevent sexual assault?

  • Walk around downtown in groups, especially at night.
  • Public Safety are available at all hours to provide escorts anywhere on campus (843.953.5609)
  • The cougar shuttle offers College of Charleston students with off-campus transport every night from 11 p.m. to 3 a.m. (888.960.2227).

What resources are available if a sexual assault happens to you?

  • The office of Victim Services on campus provides students with any information or support victims of sexual assault may need
  • Their website details South Carolina law, the legal process of filing a police report, ways to receive medical attention and every potential pathway a victim can choose.
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