Timely Warning

Published: September 18th, 2019

Category: Gainesville Timely Warning

The University of Florida Office Of Clery Act Compliance received a report from a University of Florida Campus Security Authority (CSA) indicating that a student residing in Rawlings Hall was sexually battered on Saturday, September 14, 2019 approximately 2:00am.

The reported information includes that, on Friday, September 13, 2019 the student met an individual at a fraternity-sorority function at an off-campus residence. At the conclusion of the function, the student and the individual left in an Uber Ride-Share vehicle and traveled to Rawlings Hall where the sexual battery occurred in an undisclosed location. This incident was reported to the CSA several days after it occurred and the reporting person declined to disclose further details, including the identity of the alleged assailant, to any university official or the University of Florida Police Department (UFPD). Given the nature of this incident, this Timely Warning is issued accordingly in the interest of public safety.

The University of Florida firmly believes that no action or inaction by a crime victim makes that person responsible for another person’s abuse or criminal conduct. These general safety tips are provided in an effort to assist members of the UF community.

Criminal incidents can be reported to UF CSAs who are designated, trained, and mandatory reporters under the Clery Act when victims chose not to report to law enforcement.

Additionally, victims are encouraged to report criminal incidents and suspicious activities/individuals immediately to law enforcement by calling 9-1-1.

The most common type of sexual assault occurs between individuals known to one another, including an acquaintance or in the context of a current or prior dating or domestic relationship.

Alcohol and drugs are often used to create vulnerability to sexual assault. Studies of sexual assault incidents show a high correlation between non-stranger sexual assault and drug/alcohol usage. Be alert to people pressuring you or others to use alcohol or other drugs.

Trust your instincts. If you feel uneasy or sense something is wrong, do what you can to get out of that situation or call for assistance.

Safely intervene and/or call for help if you witness disrespectful or inappropriate behavior, or a violent crime. Plan in advance: discuss how you might do this in conversations with your friends, using different scenarios, when you aren’t facing a potential crisis.

If someone is behaving disrespectfully or making you feel uncomfortable, take steps to remove yourself from the situation early, especially if you are concerned it may become physical.

Avoid walking alone if at all possible.

Always be alert and aware of your surroundings. This is particularly true if you are wearing headphones and may not be able to hear someone near or behind you.

If someone bothers you, don’t be embarrassed to attract attention to yourself. Yell! Your voice and body are your best weapons. Learn effective ways to use them by taking a self-defense class such as the Rape Aggression Defense (RAD) and always consider bringing a friend with you.

Stay in well-lighted areas, away from alleys, bushes, and entryways.

If a driver stops to ask directions, avoid getting close to the individual or vehicle .

If a vehicle appears to be following you, turn and walk in the opposite direction. You should go to a location where other people are and get assistance.

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