Sexual Assault Information

Reporting Options and Procedures

The Criminal Sexual Conduct Statutes of Michigan define sexual assault as a crime involving forced or coerced "sexual penetration" (first and third degree) or "sexual contact" (second and fourth degree). The University encourages the reporting of sexual assaults to the appropriate University officials, as reporting is the only way the University can take action against the accused assailant. Survivors may report sexual assaults to the University of Michigan Police Department (9-1-1 or use the "blue light" emergency phones on campus); to the Ann Arbor Police (9-1-1); or other police offices; to the Sexual Assault Prevention and Awareness Center (SAPAC - (734) 998-9368 or 936-3333 24-Hour Crisis Line); to the Office of the Dean of Students (764-7420); to the Office of Student Conflict Resolution (936-6308); or to any University official. Survivors and persons receiving reports of sexual assault are reminded of the importance of preserving evidence that may be necessary to the proof of criminal sexual assault or for use in University disciplinary proceedings. All University personnel are encouraged to immediately refer sexual assault survivors to SAPAC.

The survivor has the right to have any and all sexual assaults against them treated seriously and the right to be treated with dignity. Because the University recognizes that a sexual assault is more than an assault on an individual's body, but is also an attack on the individual's dignity and sense of self, the University is committed to insuring that the decision to take action against the accused shall rest solely with the survivor. There may be circumstances, however, depending on the status of the alleged assailant and the seriousness of the offense, in which the University must take action to protect the survivor or other members of the University community. The best way for a survivor to retain control over actions is to report the assault in the first instance to a confidential counselor, such as SAPAC, where no action will be taken without the survivor's consent, unless required by law.

The University upholds the right of the survivor to be free from undue coercion of any kind from University personnel, including but not limited to staff, faculty, and peer or student staff. Such coercion includes but is not limited to pressuring the survivor to report, not to report, or to under-report a sexual assault; suggesting that the survivor is somehow responsible for the sexual assault; suggesting that the survivor was contributorily negligent or assumed the risk of being sexually assaulted; or suggesting that the survivor or the University would incur unwanted publicity or humiliation by reporting the sexual assault.

Survivors who report the assault to the University will be fully informed in a timely manner of all of their rights and options, including the necessary steps and potential consequences of each option. All University personnel are encouraged to immediately refer sexual assault survivors to the SAPAC Office, (734) 998-9368 or 936-3333, 24-Hour Crisis Line.

University Disciplinary Process

The survivor has the right to pursue the University judicial process against an accused student assailant through the Statement of Student Rights and Responsibilities and the Residence Hall Judicial Process. The procedures a survivor may follow to pursue University action against a faculty or staff member are dependent upon the accused's employment status. SAPAC, in consultation with the Human Resources Office and/or General Counsel's Office, can advise a survivor on which procedures would be applicable in a given case.

The University commits itself to providing judicial and disciplinary processes that are sensitive, supportive, expedient, and respectful of the individual rights of all involved. Both the survivor and the accused have the right to be accompanied by a support person through every phase of the process. Student survivors may choose to change University housing and academic arrangements, if such changes are reasonably available, without academic penalty.

Possible sanctions for students resulting from the University's judicial process range from formal reprimands and community service to suspension and expulsion. Possible sanctions for faculty and staff range from reprimands to termination of employment. Both the accuser and the accused shall be informed of the outcome of the campus disciplinary process.

Off-Campus Legal Options

In addition to the University's judicial process and those disciplinary procedures applicable to faculty and staff, the survivor has the right to pursue criminal prosecution and/or civil litigation. The University of Michigan Police Department is available to provide assistance and information on criminal prosecution. The University is committed to providing full and prompt cooperation and assistance in notifying the proper law enforcement personnel if the survivor so chooses. The survivor has the right to pursue all legal and disciplinary remedies and counseling services without academic penalty.

The University of Michigan Police Department also can provide information on the rights and remedies accorded to crime victims generally, including information about State and Federal laws regarding mandatory testing of sexual assault suspects for communicable diseases, assistance in pursuing action under these laws, and notification of results of any such tests.

University Counseling and Educational Services

The University of Michigan has been in the forefront of addressing sexual assault with the creation and continued support of SAPAC. SAPAC is a resource for the Ann Arbor, Dearborn and Flint campuses that provides education on sexual assault and domestic violence, counseling services, information and campus-wide outreach services to survivors. SAPAC provides information to students about sexual assault reporting options, available resources and assistance for the survivor, and the survivor's rights. SAPAC personnel are available to accompany survivors and provide support during hospital or medical exams, contact with law enforcement personnel, during campus judicial hearings, and for local court proceedings. SAPAC insures survivors' confidentiality as per Mich. Comp. Laws 600.2157a (1985). All University personnel should refer sexual assault survivors to SAPAC.