UNC student accuses Tar Heel football player of rape

The North State Journal—The North State Journal
UNC-Chapel Hill sophomore Delaney Robinson

RALEIGH — A University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill student alleges she was raped by a current Tar Heel football player last Valentine’s Day and was “treated like a suspect” when she was questioned by university public safety investigators during her hospital visit following the alleged attack.Delaney Robinson accuses junior Allen Artis, a player on the UNC football team, of raping and assaulting her Feb. 14, but she and her attorney said no charges were pressed against Artis for six months.”We are aware of the misdemeanor charges against Allen Artis. I cannot comment on either the allegation or the investigative process. We take these matters very seriously and are fully cooperating with the appropriate authorities,” said UNC head football coach Larry Fedora in a emailed statement released to media Tuesday evening. Robinson was a freshman at the time and admitted to drinking that day despite being under age, “But that doesn’t give anyone the right to violate me. I did not deserve to be raped,” she said in the statement.Robinson, her father, Stacey Robinson, and her attorney, Denise W. Branch of Stuart Law Firm of Raleigh, all released statements Tuesday afternoon accusing DPS of speaking with her alleged attacker “with a tone of comradery” during the investigation. Branch said the Orange County district attorney refused to prosecute the case, and as such, Robinson “requested self-sworn warrants for misdemeanor assault on a female and misdemeanor sexual battery.” The release from Stuart Law Firm says the warrants have been issued for Artis.At the 2 p.m. news conference in Raleigh, Robinson, her father and her attorney all read prepared statements and then took questions from the media.Stacey Robison read he statement saying: “My daughter Delaney was raped and sexually assaulted on campus by a UNC football player on Valentine’s Day. Immediately she did the right thing and reported her rape. She was subjected to an extensive, invasive physical exam, but she never imagined she would then be treated by investigators with suspicion and disrespect,” Stacey Robinson said. “For more than six months, we have waited for the man who raped my daughter to be held accountable. We have had to endure delays, red tape and bureaucracy by both the UNC Department of Public Safety and the Title IX office while the University has ignored its own guidelines.”We have watched with dismay as the UNC Department of Public Safety and the Title IX office spent far more time investigation my daughter rather than her rapist. DPS even went so far as to reassure my daughter’s rapist by telling him that there was nothing to worry about, and one investigator participated in an event where he was socializing with the football team.”Nowhere in this entire process have DPS investigators, University leadership or the Orange County District Attorney’s Office expressed concern for my daughter’s well-being. What happened to my daughter is a crime and should be investigated by a professional and capable police force. UNC parents should know that their children are vulnerable and at risk. We are standing up today to demand better treatment from the University.”Delaney Robinson described questions she claimed to receive from investigators, claiming she was treated “like a suspect.” “After I was raped, I went to the hospital and gave an account of what I could remember to the sexual assault nurse,” Robinson said. “Then I was again quizzed by the DPS investigators, who consistently asked humiliating and accusatory questions. What was I wearing? What was a I drinking? How much did I drink? How much did I eat that day? Did I lead him on? Have I hooked up with him before? Do I often have one night stands? Did I even say no? What is my sexual history? How may men have I slept with? I was treated like a suspect.”My humiliation turned to anger when I listened to the recorded interviews of my rapist by DPS. Rather than accusing him of anything, the investigators spoke to him with a ton of comradery. They provided reassurances to him when he became upset. They even laughed with him when he told them how many girls’ phone numbers he had managed to get on the same night he raped me. They told him, ‘Don’t sweat it, just keep on living your life and playing football.'”The University issued a statement on Tuesday afternoon following the press conference, saying while the school is “deeply committed to the safety and well-being of our students” and “takes all allegations about sexual violence or sexual misconduct extremely it is “prohibited from responding to those allegations” under federal law. “Chancellor Carol L. Folt and her administration have made addressing these issues our highest priority,” Vice Chancellor for Communications and Public Affairs Joel Curran said. “Two years ago, the University adopted a revised comprehensive policy on discrimination and harassment, including sexual assault and sexual misconduct, that was developed based on recommendations and broad input from the campus community and outside experts. That policy establishes a rigorous process conducted by well-trained investigators. The University provides compassionate care to all students who need support.”These matters are complex and often involve multiple agencies including law enforcement. While the University always tries to complete an investigation as quickly as possible, our priority is to ensure that the factual investigations are complete and conducted in a fair and thorough manner.”While we understand and appreciate the public interest in today’s allegations, we are unable to comment further at this time.”