Are Cal Poly frat houses ripe for sexual assaults?

January 15, 2015

cal polyA sexual assault that allegedly occurred in San Luis Obispo over the weekend is reported to have taken place at a fraternity house. [Tribune]

The incident is the third sexual assault alleged to have occurred at a Cal Poly fraternity house since last October. Cal Poly administrators responded Tuesday by placing all fraternities and sororities on temporary social probation, which bars them from hosting social events on or off campus.

San Luis Obispo police say the latest alleged sexual assault was reported to have taken place on Friday night or Saturday morning at a fraternity house in the 1200 block of Monte Vista Place. Police have not yet released the name of the fraternity, and multiple frat houses are located on that street.

Last year, police received a report of a sexual assault at a Halloween Party hosted by the Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity. A woman was allegedly drugged and raped at the party.

No arrest has occurred in the case. San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s spokesman Tony Cipolla said detectives have completed an investigation into the alleged rape and submitted the case to the district attorney’s office for review.

Another sexual assault is alleged to have occurred at the Alpha Gamma Rho house on California Boulevard near the end of Cal Poly’s fall quarter. The quarter concluded on Dec. 13.

San Luis Obispo police are investigating that allegation, as well as last weekend’s alleged sexual assault.

Cal Poly officials are still determining how they will punish Alpha Gamma Rho, if at all. The university has suspended the Cal Poly chapter of Pi Kappa Alpha for at least six years.

Administrators have also given fraternity and sorority leaders 30 days to create a plan for a change in culture. If they do so, university officials will consider revoking the social probation placed on the non-offending fraternities and sororities.

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Until such time as the seemingly misogynistic fraternal culture changes, there will be no end to this this kind of behavior. Both genders appear equally culpable by the very nature of their attendance at functions that promote over indulgence and moral turpitude.

Some will argue that it’s simply a part of university life, a rite of passage if you will, when in actuality, it’s nothing more than criminal behavior.