"Sweeping rape under the rug"; SMU’s non-adversarial handling of sexual assault. By Patricia Boh, Brooks Igo, Natalie Posgate
Rape and Its Consequences: Second in a series
Over the past 25 years, more than 100 SMU students reported they were sexually assaulted. Yet, in only one case — the three men who raped Monika Korra in 2009 — were the suspects successfully prosecuted. They were not SMU students. For every suspect who is, SMU relies on a system of secret hearings using rules not found in any courtroom, and the maximum penalty is expulsion. “I don’t think there should be a carte blanche for a man or a woman to commit a violation of the state’s laws on campus and therefore have one free pass,” Erin Hendricks, the lead prosecutor in Korra’s case, said. “Why are we going to short-circuit the process and avoid consequences for a person who has potentially committed such a serious crime?” SMU officials say the internal system works well, though they refused to provide any statistics or other documented information to support their claim.