Ohio State University’s deeply troubled and now-defunct Sexual Civility and Empowerment center declined to report 57 separate potential felonies during its three-year existence, a breach of state law, according to an audit obtained by The Columbus Dispatch. The school permanently closed the unit in June 2018 after at least four employees who worked at the center were accused of failing to report at least 20 student sexual-assault complaints—and of telling victims that they were either lying or deluded. The Dispatch obtained the audit through a public records request and noted that—due to the reason behind the center’s existence—most of the unreported crimes likely involved sexual assaults.
“This failure is unacceptable, which is one of the reasons the university shut down the office and engaged nationally recognized experts to create a redesigned, best-in-class model to support victims of sexual assault,” Ohio State spokesman Chris Davey told the newspaper. In recent years, several sexual-assault and domestic-abuse scandals have plagued the school, including allegations that Ohio State physician Dr. Richard Strauss serially molested up to 100 student-athletes across 14 different sports during his time at the school.