Reporting sexual assault
SMU encourages anyone who has experienced sexual assault to alert police as soon as it is safe to do so.
In the case of sexual assault on campus, SMU Police can be reached at 911 from a campus phone; at 214-768-3333 from a cell phone; or by picking up a blue-light phone on campus.
In the case of sexual assault off campus, students should call 911 to reach police in that jurisdiction or call 214-768-3333 to reach SMU Police, who can connect callers with police in the appropriate jurisdiction.
When a case of on-campus sexual assault is reported to SMU Police, police officials conduct an immediate investigation, which may include gathering evidence and witness statements; determining probable cause; and obtaining search and arrest warrants.
If it is determined that the alleged perpetrator may pose a continuing threat, SMU issues a crime alert by campus email. Crime alerts contain information about how to obtain help if a violation occurs, as well as personal security tips.
SMU Police also notify the appropriate external law enforcement agency that sexual assault has been reported and is under investigation.
A student may decide immediately or at a later date to pursue charges and prosecution in a Texas criminal court. A student also may decide not to pursue charges and may sign an affidavit of non-prosecution. In addition, a student may decide to pursue an internal grievance process under the University’s Title IX policy. SMU Police, 214-768-3333, can provide information and assistance with the criminal process; the Office of Institutional Access and Equity, 214-768-3601, can provide information and assistance with the internal grievance process. Learn more about criminal and internal grievance options here.
SMU prohibits threats or acts of retaliation against students involved in a report of sexual misconduct or assisting with an investigation. Students who are threatened in any way should report their concerns to the Office of the Dean of Student Life, 214-768-4564, or the SMU Title IX Coordinator, 214-768-3601.
Reporting and confidentiality
In addition to SMU Police, students may choose to report sexual assault to other officials on campus. To the extent possible, campus officials will protect the privacy and confidentiality of all parties involved in a report of sexual assault. However, federal law requires campus officials to disclose specific, limited information. The federal requirements are detailed below, as well as contact information for campus officials who can offer confidentiality and those who can offer limited confidentiality.
These campus resources are available to all students, including students who have been accused of sexual assault, witnesses in sexual assault cases and friends of students involved in these cases.
Mental health counselors, pastoral counselors and health care providers must honor confidentiality, except under very limited circumstances such as an imminent threat of danger to self or others.
Community resources including the Dallas Area Rape Crisis Center, 972-641-7273 (24-hour hotline), also provide confidential counseling.
Other campus officials
These campus officials are required by Title IX to provide information about a sexual misconduct report to the SMU Title IX Coordinator for investigation and follow-up. They also are required by the federal Clery Act to notify SMU Police that sexual misconduct has been reported, but they are not required to provide the name of the person reporting the misconduct. For more information, contact theTitle IX Coordinator, 214-768-3601.
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