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Sexual Assault, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, and Stalking Policy

POLICY STATEMENT


Delta State University is committed to creating and maintaining an environment in which students, faculty, and staff can work together in an atmosphere free of the threat of sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking.

Delta State University views any form of sexual assault including: (as defined in the following section), domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking as a serious offense. Such behavior is prohibited by state law and University policy. It is the intention of the University to take whatever action is needed to prevent, correct and if necessary, discipline behavior that violates this policy. Prosecution of students, faculty or staff for crimes they commit, whether by state or federal prosecutors is independent of, and in addition to the charges or disciplinary proceedings instituted by the University.

DEFINITIONS


Dating Violence Violence committed by a person who is or has been in a social relationship of a romantic or intimate nature with the victim; and where the existence of such a relationship shall be determined based on a consideration of the following factors:

  • The length of the relationship
  • The type of relationship
  • The frequency of interaction between the persons involved in the relationship

Domestic Violence – A pattern of abusive behavior in any relationship that is used by one partner to gain or maintain power and control over another intimate partner. Domestic violence can be physical, sexual, emotional, economic, or psychological actions or threats of actions that influence another person. This includes any behaviors/actions that intimidate, manipulate, humiliate, isolate, and/or frighten.

Sexual Assault – Any sexual act perpetrated upon a person without her or his consent where; the assailant uses physical force, threat, coercion, or intimidation to overpower or control the survivor; the survivor fears that she or he or another person will be injured or otherwise harmed if she or he does not submit; the survivor is prevented from resisting due to the influence of alcohol or other drugs; or where consent is otherwise not freely given.

Stalking – Any person who purposefully engages in a course of conduct directed at a specific person or who makes a credible threat, and who knows or should know that the conduct would cause a reasonable person to fear for his or her own safety, to fear for the safety of another person, or to fear damage or destruction of his or her property, is guilty of the crime of stalking.

Consent – Clear and unmistakable agreement expressed in mutually understandable words or actions to engage in a particular activity. Consent can be withdrawn by either party at any point. Consent must be voluntarily given and may not be valid if a person is being subjected to actions or behaviors that elicit emotional or psychological pressure, intimidation, or fear. Consent to engage in one sexual activity, or past agreement to engage in a particular sexual activity cannot be presumed to constitute consent to engage in a different sexual activity or to engage again in a sexual activity. Consent cannot be validly given by a person who is under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs.

 

PROCEDURES and RESPONSIBILITIES


REPORTING SEXUAL ASSAULT, DOMESTIC VIOLENCE, DATING VIOLENCE, AND STALKING

The following information provides steps to follow should an incident of sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, or stalking occur:

  • Get to a safe place as soon as possible!
  • In cases of sexual assault:
      • Try to preserve all physical evidence. The victim should not bathe, shower, brush teeth, douche, use the toilet, or change clothing until he or she has a medical exam. Contact a close friend or relative if available; who can provide support and accompany the victim to the medical exam and/or police department.
      • Get medical attention as soon as possible. If the victim reports memory loss, loss of consciousness, or other circumstances suspicious for a drug-facilitated assault, a urine test may be conducted if the victim presents within 96 hours. Some of the commonly used “date rape” drug however are only detectable in the urine for six to eight hours after ingestion.
  • If the crime occurs on campus, it is strongly recommended that a report be made directly to the University Police. However, you may also report the incident to a Campus Security Authority (as defined in the annual security report) and he/she can assist you.
  • If the crime occurs off campus, you can report it directly to local law enforcement or the University Police can assist you with making the report if you wish. Even though the incident may have occurred off campus, it is still recommended that you report it to the University Police or a Campus Security Authority, or the Title IX Coordinator, so that you can be provided resources and discuss other on-campus options.
  • It is important to remember that reporting a crime is not the same as prosecuting the crime. The decision to prosecute may be made at another time. Final decision to prosecute is determined by the prosecuting attorney. NOTE: In the State of Mississippi, if law enforcement is summoned to an incident of domestic violence as described by state law, and can determine that evidence of violence exists as well as a primary aggressor, the law enforcement officer is required to make an arrest of the primary aggressor(s).
  • Consider talking to a counselor (mental health, substance abuse, and/or conflict management). Seeing a counselor may be important in helping the victim understand her/his feelings and begin the process of recovery.

Whether an incident occurs on or off campus, it is strongly recommended that a victim of sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, or stalking make a report to the University Police Department or the Title IX Coordinator. Even if an incident occurred off-campus, resources and assistance can still be provided. A disciplinary complaint and a Title IX complaint (See Title IX policy) may be filed.

When a student or employee files a complaint concerning sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and/or stalking, he or she will be provided with a document outlining their rights as a victim and possible accommodation options.

SUPPORT SERVICES

The University will work with victims to provide a safe and secure environment after an allegation of sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and/or stalking has been reported, (regardless of whether or not the incident has been reported to law enforcement). The University will provide, as needed and if reasonable, options concerning changes in the following areas:

  • Housing assignments
  • Academic scheduling
  • Transportation
  • Working environment

The University Police Department, in cooperation with other members of the crisis team, will also assist a victim with creating a protection plan for implementation during the investigation and adjudication procedures.

The following agencies and outreach services are available for assistance and may be contacted directly or through assistance from a university representative if desired.

 

Delta State University Resource Numbers
Counseling 662-846-4690
Health Services 662-846-4630
Office Housing & Residence Life 662-846-4151
University Police Department 662-846-4155
Human Resources 662-846-4035
Student Affairs 662-846-4150
Title IX Coordinator 662-846-4690
Community and State Resource Numbers
Bolivar County District Attorney 662-843-8000
Bolivar County Health Department 662-843-2706
Bolivar County Sheriff 662-843-5378
Bolivar Medical Center 662-846-0061
Cleveland Police Department 662-843-3611
Delta Community Mental Health Services 662-846-7556
MS Domestic Violence Hotline 800-898-3234
MS Sexual Assault Hotline 800-656-4673
Our House Inc. (Greenville, MS) 662-332-5683

 

Responsible Office and/or Policy Owner: Title IX Coordinator

RELATED DOCUMENTS

 

  • None
STATUS APPROVED


Active

DATES(S)


Change/Review/Approval Date:

Policy Effective Date: 08/15/2016