Informal Reporting Options
To report an incident of sexual misconduct or sexual assault, please call Brescia Security at 270-686-4300; call the RA on duty, or call 911. You may also call or email Brescia’s Title IX Coordinator (Tammy Keller, Director of Human Resources: 270-686-4246, [email protected]) or Deputy Title IX Coordinator (Joshua Clary, Vice President of Student Development: 270-686-4332, [email protected]).
Brescia University strongly encourages all members of the university community to report information about any incident of sexual misconduct or relationship violence as soon as possible, whether the incident occurred on or off campus.
Brescia University requires all faculty members, administrators, supervisors, and any employees who have responsibility for student welfare to promptly report information about any incident of sexual misconduct or relationship violence, unless the employee is required by law to keep that information confidential by virtue of his or her professional role (e.g. the employee received the information in his or her role as a psychological counselor or a pastoral counselor).
All employees who receive a report should strongly encourage the reporting party, whether it is the individual who allegedly experienced the act or acts of sexual misconduct or relationship violence or a third party, to speak directly with the Title IX Coordinator or the Deputy Title IX Coordinator.
Preservation of Evidence
Any individual who has experienced an act or acts of sexual misconduct or relationship violence is encouraged to take steps to preserve evidence, as doing so may be necessary to the proof of a criminal act or to obtain a protection order from the court.
The urge to change clothes or shower should be resisted. If clothing is changed, each garment should be placed in a separate paper (not plastic) bag. If the incident involves any written or electronic communications (e.g. pictures, texts, social media posts, videos, etc.), preserve copies.
It is best for any physical evidence to be collected immediately, ideally within the first 24 hours after the incident occurs. Prompt notice and the preservation of evidence makes it easier to investigate and respond appropriately to the situation.
Official Reporting Options for Survivors
A student has the option to pursue a criminal complaint with the appropriate law enforcement agency, to pursue a complaint through the University student conduct process, or to pursue both processes simultaneously. Regardless of the option chosen, the University will initiate an administrative investigation under Title IX.
Option 1: Criminal Complaint
The University encourages students to report all incidents of sexual misconduct or sexual assault to the police. If the incident occurred on Brescia property, the Office of Student Development is the appropriate office with which to file a report, but students are free to contact a law enforcement agency of their choosing if they believe for any reason that Brescia Security is not the student’s best option (if the student chooses to contact off-campus law enforcement, the University still requests that the student apprise the Office of Student Development of the situation even if done after initial contact with other law enforcement officials). Off-campus incidents will likely fall in the jurisdiction of the Owensboro Police Departments or Daviess County Sheriff’s Office. Student Development staff can assist with contacting the appropriate agency.
Incidents of sexual misconduct involving students that are reported to Brescia Security will also be referred to the VPDOS in the Office of Student Development for follow-up and administrative investigation. Similarly, the VPDOS will follow-up where appropriate in those instances where the University has a report of an incident of sexual misconduct or sexual assault that has been reported to another law enforcement agency.
The administrative investigation conducted by the VPDOS or his/her designee is separate and distinct from the criminal investigation and flows from the University’s obligations under Title IX to ensure that it is providing a safe environment for all students. If a complainant wishes to pursue a criminal complaint exclusively, the complainant may choose to temporarily defer the administrative investigation and/or conduct process by making a formal written request to VPDOS, which may delay the administrative investigation and the University’s ability to respond. The University may continue its administrative investigation where it has reason to believe that the alleged harasser may be an imminent threat to the safety of the complainant and/or other students. At any time, the complainant may choose to rescind the deferral by making a formal written request to the Dean of Students, electing to resume the administrative investigation and/or student conduct process. The University will maintain documentation of the date of deferral. Information obtained through the criminal investigation may be used by the Office of Student Development for consideration in the University student conduct process.
If a student pursues a criminal complaint, a member of the Office of Student Development will request that the Daviess County Prosecutor’s Office, or other appropriate local law enforcement agency personnel, keep the University informed and immediately advise of its decision whether to prosecute the complaint. The University will maintain documentation of the date of the request to the Prosecutor’s Office. In cases where the Prosecutor’s Office declines prosecution, a member of the Office of Student Development will provide written notice to the complainant of the Prosecutor’s decision.
Option 2: University Student Conduct Process
Sexual misconduct involving students, including sexual assaults and relationship violence, whether or not they have been reported to a police agency, should also be reported to the University for investigation and resolution through University processes.
If a student reports an incident of sexual misconduct or sexual assault to the University, the Title IX Coordinator and/or his/her designee will conduct an administrative investigation. Ordinarily, an administrative investigation will include a review of statements obtained from either party, interviews with both parties, interviews with witnesses as appropriate and review of relevant documentary evidence. Once the investigation is complete, the VPDOS or his/her designee will make a determination about whether the case should be referred to the Student Conduct Board for resolution. Information obtained through the administrative investigation may be used by the Office of Student Development for consideration in the University student conduct process, with or without the cooperation of the complainant.
Option 3: Simultaneous Processes
A student has the option to pursue a criminal complaint with the appropriate law enforcement agency, to pursue the University’s conduct process, or to pursue both avenues simultaneously.
Written Notice of Reporting Options
Students who report alleged sexual misconduct, sexual assault, or relationship violence will be provided with written notice of the above referenced reporting options. The University, through the VPDOS or his/her designee, must also obtain written acknowledgment from the student of her/his decision regarding which options, if any, the student wishes to pursue.
Other Potential Policy Violations
At times, students are hesitant to report the occurrence of a sexual assault to University officials because they are concerned that they themselves, or witnesses to the misconduct, may be charged with other policy violations, e.g., drug or alcohol violations. These behaviors are not condoned by the University, but the importance of dealing with alleged sexual misconduct, sexual assault, or relationship violence outweighs the University’s interest in addressing lesser violations. Accordingly, in these cases, the University will not pursue disciplinary action against a student who makes a complaint of sexual misconduct, sexual assault, or relationship violence in connection with the reporting of that incident, or against students named as witnesses to the incident.