Police will discuss their investigative findings into an alleged rape of a UVA student
The student's allegations have been clouded by controversy
Police in Charlottesville, Virginia, will publicly discuss on Monday the results of their investigation into an alleged gang rape of a University of Virginia student, which was initially reported last year in Rolling Stone magazine.
The police findings could put to rest a complicated controversy about the alleged gang rape of a female student at a fraternity party.
The accusation has been controversial because of the nature of such a crime and because the accusation itself has been clouded by subsequent questions about the Rolling Stone article.
After the account was published last fall, Rolling Stone magazine later apologized for discrepancies in its article about the alleged gang rape after friends of the victim expressed doubts about the woman’s account and the accused fraternity chapter denied key details.
CNN senior media correspondent Brian Stelter described Rolling Stone’s announcement as falling short of a full-scale retraction. It remains unclear what really happened to the female student, Stelter said.
“We are in the phase here where Rolling Stone is trying to figure that out,” Stelter said in December. “They’ve apologized, but not retracted. So they’re not saying the story is false. They’re just saying there are some questions they need to figure out the answers to still.”
The Charlottesville Police Department will hold its press conference at 2 p.m. ET on Monday.
Rolling Stone editors had chosen not to contact the man who allegedly “orchestrated the attack on ‘Jackie’ (the woman who was the subject of the article) nor any of the men she claimed participated in the attack for fear of retaliation against her,” a decision the magazine says it now regrets.
“In the face of new information, there now appear to be discrepancies in Jackie’s account, and we have come to the conclusion that our trust in her was misplaced,” Rolling Stone said.
Rolling Stone Managing Editor Will Dana later tweeted that “the truth would have been better served by getting the other side of the story.”
The article chronicled the school’s failure to respond to that alleged assault. It prompted an emergency meeting by the school’s governing board and the announcement of a zero-tolerance approach toward sexual assault cases.
According to the magazine, Jackie, who at the time had just started her freshman year at the Charlottesville school, claimed she was raped by seven men at Phi Kappa Psi fraternity, while two more gave encouragement, during a party.
However, the University of Virginia’s Phi Kappa Psi chapter did not have a party the night of September 28, 2012, the date when the alleged attack occurred, or at all that weekend, the chapter said in a statement Friday. The chapter’s lawyer, Ben Warthen, told CNN email and fraternity records are proof.
Warthen said there were other discrepancies in the accuser’s account. For example, the accused orchestrator of the alleged rape did not belong to the fraternity, the fraternity house has no side staircase, and there were no pledges at that time of year.
Jackie told the magazine she hurried out a side staircase after the incident and said her attackers egged each other on, asking, “Don’t you want to be a brother?”
“I’m worried that girls are not going to report now out of fear of being called liars,” Valentine told CNN.
CNN’s Greg Botelho, Melissa Gray and Sara Ganim contributed to this report.