Home / National News / Alleged Rape Victim at UNC Said She Was 'Treated Like a Suspect'

 

(CHAPEL HILL, N.C.) — The 19-year-old University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill student who accused a football player at the school of raping her on Valentine’s Day of this year has spoken out, saying she was treated “like a suspect” during the sexual assault investigation.

Sophomore Delaney Robinson, who said she is revealing her identity to ensure that a similar incident doesn’t happen to another student, said in a statement that she was “further victimized by the people who should be working to keep us safe.”

After she was allegedly raped, Robinson said she immediately went to the hospital to report the alleged rape and had a rape kit taken. At the hospital, she said she was asked “humiliating and accusatory questions” by investigators, such as what she was wearing, what and how much she drank and how much she ate that day. Investigators also delved into her sexual history, she said, asking whether she “led him on” and if she “had hooked up with him before.”

Their line of questioning continued, she added, with inquiries into whether she often had one-night stands, if she ever said “no” and how many men she’s slept with in the past.

She said she takes responsibility for drinking, despite being under age, the night she says she was allegedly sexually assaulted, but that “it doesn’t give anyone the right to violate” her.

“I did not deserve to be raped,” she said. “My life has changed forever, while the person who assaulted me continues as a student and a football player on this campus.”

Robinson held a press conference Tuesday alongside her father and her attorney, Denise Branch, who described the delays on holding the alleged attacker accountable.

Though the investigation is ongoing, District Attorney Jim Woodall told ABC News no criminal charges have yet been filed by the Orange County & Chatham County District Attorney’s Office against Robinson’s alleged attacker.

“At every turn we have been met with discouragement and delay,” Branch said.

In the absence of criminal charges, Robinson filed two self-sworn civil warrants against her alleged attacker for misdemeanor assault on a female and misdemeanor sexual battery, Branch said, which a magistrate issued. In North Carolina, citizens can ask a judicial magistrate to issue a warrant against another person for an alleged crime. The magistrate makes a determination based on probable cause and is able to issue only misdemeanor warrants in those cases.

“She decided to take this extraordinary step to hold her attacker accountable for his actions,” Branch said of her client. “She wants to do all that she can so this student, this man, does not have the opportunity to rape another student.”

Allen Artis, the 20-year-old student accused of raping Robinson, was immediately suspended from the football team after he was charged with misdemeanor sexual assault, per university policy, said Assistant Athletic Director of Communications at UNC Kevin Best. Artis can only be reinstated after the athletic director, head coach and university officials agree it is appropriate.

Artis is a junior from Georgia and played in 12 games during the 2015 season, according to the UNC website. ABC News could not immediately reach Artis for comment, and it is unclear if he has obtained a lawyer.

When she listened to the interviews of her alleged attacker, conducted by the UNC Department of Public Safety, Robinson said her “humiliation turned to anger.” She said investigators spoke to him “with a tone of [camaraderie]” and even laughed when he told them how many girls’ phone numbers he had managed to get on the night the alleged rape occurred.

“They provided reassurances to him when he became upset,” Robinson said. “They told him, ‘Don’t sweat it. Just keep on living your life and playing football.'”

Robinson’s father, Stacey Robinson, said in a statement that the DPS spent “far more time” investigating her daughter than her alleged rapist.

“Nowhere in this entire process have DPS investigators, University leadership or the Orange County District Attorney’s Office expressed concern for my daughter’s well-being,” Stacey Robinson said. “We are standing up today to demand better treatment from the University.”

The DPS at UNC-Chapel Hill did not immediately respond to ABC News’ request for comment. The Orange County & Chatham County District Attorney’s office said it could not comment on the police department’s behalf.

Robinson said she “did everything a rape victim is supposed to do,” by reporting it, having a rape kit taken, giving a statement and cooperating with law enforcement and the university’s Title IX office.

“But six months later, the university has done nothing,” she said, adding that she was “taking this public stand” for “the other students on campus who are not protected, despite what the university tells us.”

In a statement, UNC-Chapel Hill said it was aware of the allegations made by Robinson and Branch but that it is prohibited from responding to the allegations due to federal privacy law.

Two years ago, the university adopted a revised comprehensive policy on discrimination and harassment, including sexual assault and misconduct, which was developed based on recommendations and broad input from the campus community and outside experts, it said.

“The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is deeply committed to the safety and well-being of our students and takes all allegations about sexual violence or sexual misconduct extremely seriously. These matters are complex and often involve multiple agencies including law enforcement,” said Vice Chancellor for Communications and Public Affairs Joel Curran. “While the University always tries to complete an investigation as quickly as possible, our priority is to ensure that the factual investigations are complete and conducted in a fair and thorough manner.”

Robinson said she loves UNC, calling the school her home and intends to continue at the school through graduation.

“But, I expect the university to fulfill its promises to me and to all students,” she said.

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