Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo is calling for an investigation of Niagara County Community College's handling of sex assaults in the wake of a 7 Eyewitness News investigation that revealed president James P. Klyczek blamed the victims of alleged sexual assaults on campus.
“These allegations must be investigated and we have requested a full review," Cuomo said Monday through a spokeswoman. "New York led the nation by signing into law the most aggressive policy to combat sexual assault on college campuses to better protect our students. The state has zero tolerance for any violation of the law, and we will continue to hold all institutions and wrongdoers fully accountable under the law.”
Cuomo was referring to the "Enough is Enough" legislation he signed into law in 2014 to combat sexual assault on college campuses.
State policy states that victims have the right to "be free from any suggestion that the victim/survivor is at fault"..."or should have acted in a different manner to avoid such a crime."
Klyczek appears to violate that policy by making remarks about a woman who said she was assaulted near the campus library on July 19.
“What is she stupid?" Klyczek said. "I mean, no, seriously. This just aggravates me. Make us the guilty party because you're too stupid to follow your instinct that this guy sits down next to you and there's nobody else around, you agree to take him on a tour. That is as dumb as can be.”
The middle-aged victim said she wanted her daughter to attend NCCC when she got older -- but after the sexual attack, she no longer felt the school was safe.
In the tapes, which were provided to 7 Eyewitness News from a source close to Klyczek, the longest-serving president in school history said:
“Her daughter should be worried, because if she's got her mother's genes, she's dumber than a doorknob.”
Sexual assault expert Mary Brennan-Taylor also condemned the remarks and explained that a sexual assault is "never, ever, ever the victim's fault."
Some of Klyczek's top administrators -- including Director of Security Francis Giles and VP of Operations Michael Dombrowski -- also made disparaging comments about one of the sex assault victims.