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I-Team: Startling sexual assault stats at Buffalo State

Posted: 4:14 AM, Nov 02, 2018
Updated: 2018-11-02 08:14:10Z

In 2016, SUNY Buffalo State says it rolled out an aggressive program, to educate students and staff about sexual assault on campus. The school encourages all victims to report sexual assault immediately.

That year, according to the United States Department of Education Buffalo State, home to nearly 10,000 students reported 13 rapes on campus. 7 Eyewitness News found that to be more than four times the rapes and sexual assaults reported from the previous year.

Comparing Buff State to other colleges in the area, University at Buffalo has more than 30,000 students and reported two rapes in 2016. Canisius, with more than 3,700 students reported one rape in 2016.

"We anticipated that increase in reported sexual assault," said University Police Chief Peter Carey. 

Carey says because of the aggressive new program, the jump wasn't a surprise.

"We wanted our victims to come forward so we could provide them assistance, advocacy, and we could be able to investigate and perhaps prosecute that case," Carey said.

Our of the 13 rapes reported in 2016, 11 happened in student housing facilities, one in a car and another in an academic building.

Chief Carey sas nine times out of ten, the perpetrator is known to the victim.

"When you bring someone into your dorm, it's like bringing them into your home," said Carey. "You want to make sure your roommate is there and your door is open."

Carey says in most of these cases the victim calls University Police right away.

In the event the victim wants to remain anonymous, the school provides this reporting tool on the campus police website. There, a victim of sexual assault, a friend or a counselor can report an incident. 

The numbers for 2017 show there were seven reported sexual assaults on Buffalo State's campus.

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