'Rolling Stone': Discrepancies in its report of UVA rape - NBC12 - WWBT - Richmond, VA News On Your Side

'Rolling Stone': Discrepancies in its report of UVA rape


'Rolling Stone' has released a note to its readers, saying there now appear to be discrepancies in the victim's account.

There was fallout on UVA's campus after a 'Rolling Stone' writer profiled a student who claimed seven men took turns raping her at the Phi Kappa Psi house.

Rolling Stone says at the time of its investigation, it had no reason to ever question the credibility of the alleged victim, referred to as Jackie. But now the magazine says there's new information and editors now believe their trust in Jackie was misplaced.

The year was 2012. That's when student Jackie told a Rolling Stone reporter she was gang raped at the Phi Kappa Psi frat house and encouraged by school administrators to keep quiet. Since the article, the university suspended all frat activities and lawmakers started proposing changes to how campus rapes are investigated.

"I don't see this particular story no matter how it turns out needing to change that conversation,” said Kate McCord with the Virginia Sexual & Domestic Violence Action Alliance.

She says she's really not surprised by Friday's developments - but says the entire story may not be fabricated.

"I can't speak to the veracity of Jackie's story but what I can say is overall when people are traumatized, the way victims and survivors remember what happened to them is different from how non-traumatic memories are laid down in our brains,” McCord said.

Friday, the fraternity in question said it is saddened by the allegations and believes the story is false. Members say there was never a party the night Jackie claims she was assaulted and that the man accused of initiated the rape was not a member of the fraternity. Rolling Stone says to protect Jackie, it never questioned any of the men accused of gang raping the UVA student.

Despite it all, McCord is calling on any victim to not hesitate when it comes to speaking out.

"If you tell someone and they don't give you the support they need then tell someone else,” she said.

Attorney General Mark Herring and UVA President Teresa Sullivan issued statements saying the work must continue to support survivors and search for solutions.

Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe called for a full review of the university's policies and procedures following the allegations. UVA's President Teresa Sullivan responded to the rape allegations by outlining several reforms, while the Board of Visitors finalized a new zero-tolerance policy regarding sexual assaults.

Herring and the University of Virginia's Rector proposed Judge Mark Filip lead a review of the university, despite having once been a member of the Phi Kappa Psi fraternity. Herring reversed course the next morning, announcing Filip was being replaced and another candidate would be selected as independent counsel.

The Virginia Alpha Chapter of Phi Kappa Psi released a statement, saying, "the Chapter's undergraduate members have made efforts to contribute with internal fact-finding. Our initial doubts as to the accuracy of the article have only been strengthened as alumni and undergraduate members have delved deeper."

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