Wesleyan Students Watched As Woman Was Raped In Fraternity Common Room: Lawsuit

Lawsuit Alleges Woman Was Raped At Frat As Others Watched

Another fraternity at Wesleyan University in Connecticut faces a lawsuit over its alleged role in a sexual assault that occurred in its house.

A female student, who was not named by local media outlets, claims in a federal lawsuit filed Tuesday that she was raped in the common room of the Psi Upsilon fraternity while surrounded by other students at a party in May, according to WVIT.

The suit names the assailant, several fraternity members, the social chairman of the house and both the local and national Psi Upsilon organizations, the Hartford Courant reports, claiming their negligence allowed her to be assaulted. The suit does not name the university.

"I can't even describe the pain of being raped, or how much it alters a life, and no other person should ever be forced to have that experience. I hope my experience and lawsuit will create changes that protect others," the victim stated in the lawsuit, according to WFSB.

This is the second fraternity at Wesleyan to face a lawsuit in recent years for sexual assault. An earlier suit, which described the Beta Theta Pi house as a "rape factory," was settled on undisclosed terms last fall.

"Psi Upsilon Fraternity takes all reports of risk management violations, especially those with regard to sexual assault, very seriously," said Tom Fox, executive director for the national organization, in a statement Wednesday. "We are currently investigating the incident and gathering further information."

According to the Courant, the suit claims that during the May 2013 party, numerous intoxicated frat brothers and underage pledges were made to perform a strip show. The victim, a freshman at the time, attempted to leave the party when a member grabbed her and assaulted her in front of numerous people. She sought medical attention, reported the assault to the university's public safety department, and after judicial proceedings, the assailant was expelled.

The pledge event was promoted among frat members "as an opportunity to engage in sexual encounters with female guests," the suit states.

The lawsuit seeks damages for medical and psychological treatment.

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