Governor’s task force discusses combating sexual violence on campus

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — “Nobody should fear that they’re going to be a victim of sexual violence,” said Attorney General Mark Herring.

It’s the third time the governor’s task force on combating campus sexual violence has met and for the first time the group talked about what the state should do to stop and prevent sexual assaults at colleges and universities.

“It is really, really, important, what you’re doing. It’s important for students in Virginia, for parents and really for all Virginians,” said Herring.

More than two dozen recommendations have been made including creating a database of people who are dismissed or expelled from a college for sexual violence. Hannah Graham murder suspect Jesse Matthew was expelled from Liberty University in 2002 following a sexual assault. He transferred to Christopher Newport University several months later. The school was never aware of why he was expelled.

Other recommendations include teaching healthy relationship behavior to kids in K-12, and having colleges employ smart phone apps where victims can report sexual assaults to police anonymously or with identifying information.

“Virginia can be a leader, a national leader on this issue,” said Herring.

The task force will make final recommendations to the governor in June.


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