Ateneo finds no confirmation of rape incident in Loyola campus

MANILA, Philippines – Ateneo de Manila University (ADMU) Loyola Schools Vice President Maria Luz Vilches said on Friday, December 14, no confirmation has been found that an incident of rape happened inside the campus.

In a statement posted on Facebook Friday, Vilches also said that the police investigating the incident concluded "that the alleged rape incident 'was likely a hoax,'" unless the victim or witnesses of the incident will come out and seek police assistance in the future. 

"No confirmation has been received through any of the University's reporting channels," said the statement.

Vilches said the university took immediate steps to verify an anonymous report on social media that a girl was sexually assaulted on campus.

She was referring to an unnamed post that appeared Saturday, November 24, in the Facebook group "ADMU Freedom Wall." In the post, a student said two men sexually assaulted her in the comfort room of a school building. The post did not mention when the incident took place.

“As of this time, no confirmation has been received through any of the University’s reporting channels. The area where the rape allegedly took place is covered by CCTV which is monitored in real time 24/7 by campus security. No record of any suspicious movements in the alleged location has been detected by campus security,” Vilches said.

The statement concluded a 3-week investigation of the university.

The incident came on the heels of a sexual harassment case filed by Ateneo's student council with the university last October 15, against a male professor.  (READ: Ateneo professor faces sexual harassment complaint)

The student council filed a case with the university after it received several complaints, which also stemmed from anonymous posts on the Facebook group "ADMU Freedom Wall." The posts alleged that the professor sexually harassed several students.

The University Committee on Decorum and Investigation is still looking into this matter. 

Vilches said despite the findings into the alleged rape incident, the school takes reports of sexual assault seriously.

She added precautionary measures have been taken to reinforce campus security, including the deployment of more security guards to rove around school premises and installation of more CCTVs. A review of the school’s security systems was also being done by a security consultant.

Vilches likewise called on the campus community to be vigilant and report suspicious activity immediately. – Rappler.com

Sofia Tomacruz

Sofia Tomacruz covers foreign affairs, the overseas Filipino workers, and elections. She also writes stories on the treatment of women and children. Follow her on Twitter @sofiatomacruz. Email her at sofia.tomacruz@rappler.com.

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