Policy Reform

06.13.146:10 PM ET

Football Before Sexual Assault?

After coming under fire for its mishandling of rape accusations against one of Florida State’s star football players, Florida police indicates signs of policy reform. But why has it taken so long?

After a previous New York Times article in April detailed the way the Tallahassee Police Department dealt with a rape accusation against Florida State University’s Jameis Winson, police chief Michael DeLeo has agreed to do an external review of the department’s policies. The department is working with the advocacy group End Violence Against Women International to improve its sexual assault complaint policy. While not stating a specific timetable, Meg Baldwin, the executive director of a service provider to survivors of sexual assault called the Refuge House, has “applaud[ed] the chief of police’s initiative.” Previously only 20 percent of sexual assaults reported to the prosecutor’s office resulted in arrests, charges and trial or plea, she said.