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2nd night of protests planned outside of KU fraternity house after alleged sexual assault

Protests to happen at Phi Kappa Psi
KU Phi Kappa Psi
Posted at 4:46 PM, Sep 14, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-14 18:34:10-04

LAWRENCE, Kan. — For a second night, protests are planned outside the Phi Kappa Psi fraternity at the University of Kansas, after a female undergraduate student was allegedly raped at a party on Saturday, Sept. 11.

Monday night, hundreds of students gathered at the home located in the 1600 block of W 15th Street, chanting phrases like, "rape is violence."

“I was like 'Oh no, what’s going on?' And that’s when we found out that a girl was abused, sexually assaulted," Ana Davalos, a sophomore at KU said.

The Lawrence Police Department, along with members from the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office and KU Public Safety, maintained a law enforcement presence in the area for the duration of the protest, to ensure the safety of everyone involved.

No arrests were made, and no injuries were reported.

Reports of pepper spray being used on students at the protest were circulating, but Lawrence Police said it was done by private security personnel in advance of police arrival.

The news about the alleged incident circulated around on social media, prompting students to act.

“It was like an empowering thing for me at least because I know like every girl there had a story or like a good chunk of them," Abigail Nylen, a freshman at KU said.

Deputy Chief James Druen of KU's campus police told KSHB 41 that two on-campus rapes were reported in both 2019 and in 2020.

When it comes to incidents at sororities and fraternities, the Lawrence Police Department handles those.

According to the University of Kansas Crime Map, the victim reported the incident to campus police who then referred her to Lawrence Police.

Students on the KU campus said they want actions taken and answers.

“We just wanted to say that you’ve been doing this for decades, like my parents have stories about this and they were in college like 3 decades ago, and it was like we’re done, this is enough," Nylen said. "We’re going to take a stand and say 'Hey, KU this is your move now and we’ve shown our voices, we’ve said what we needed to say and you need to do something about this.'"

On Nov. 7, 2013, Phi Kappa Psi had been found responsible for a violation of the KU Code of Student Rights and Responsibilities.

On the university's website, hazing, providing false information and organizational responsibility violates were listed, putting the fraternity on a two year probation.

According to the university's violations summary online, 34 sexual misconduct violations have been recorded since Fall of 2014.

“Literally two letters, 'N-O,' Davalos said. "But we have to restate it so many times, it feels frustrating, it feels sad, it’s degrading."

In a statement to KSHB 41, Lawrence Police said it's aware of an incident that happened over the weekend, but couldn't provide much details yet.

"We are also aware of an incident involving a possible sexual assault near campus over the weekend," the department said in the statement. "In order to protect the privacy of victims, we do not comment or provide details about sexual assault incidents or their associated investigations. We take allegations of sexual assault very seriously. Part of the trauma-informed process utilized by the Lawrence Kansas Police Department focuses on empowering survivors by allowing them time and space to make their own decisions."

Anyone who is a victim or has knowledge of a sexual assault can contact Lawrence Police at 785-832-7509.