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October 31, 2017 10:24 PM

USD Community Reacts To Rape Charges

Vermillion, SD

Two University of South Dakota football players facing rape charges are due in court on November 7 at 9 a.m. at the Clay County Courthouse. Meanwhile, the community is reacting. 

According to court papers, the two men walked into a room when another man was having consensual sex with a woman. That's when they allegedly assaulted her. The victim says she told them to leave and they wouldn't. The incident allegedly happened at the two football players' apartment on Oct. 22. 

"Students weren't notified right away because it wasn't a threat to the community at the time. And that's always a decision based on individual cases," USD Dean of Students Kim Grieve said.

The university sent out a news release four days after the alleged sexual assault happened. Today, the school notified students.

"I think the thing that is most important is that we continue training and education for our students and for faculty and staff so we can prevent sexual assault in the future," Grieve said.

Junior Alexis Blanchard says the incident doesn't define her school.

"I am sure there's possibly other cases that haven't came forth, but that is not what USD is about, and that's not what USD is," Blanchard said.

Her friend, sophomore Sammie Dlugosh, sees some good coming from this case.

"It's going to bring our community closer in the end," Dlugosh said.

Isaac Kaske of Vermillion works at R-Pizza downtown. He says he feels safe.

"I do, but as far as concern for others, I have my concerns," Kaske said. 

He highlights the lighting in Vermillion.

"As far as just city things, there's a lot of streets here that don't have working street lights. Campus is not well lit," Kaske said.

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