Students warned after several sexual assaults reported at Marquette University

CREATED May 3, 2013 - UPDATED: May 3, 2013

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MILWAUKEE -  A warning to all Marquette students, there has been a rash of acquaintance-related sexual assaults.

Several sexual assaults were reported in the last month, and heading into one of the last weekends of the semester, Marquette public safety officials want students to be safe.

“I was just surprised because April was sexual assault awareness month and the University has been doing a lot to help us realize that,” said Sophomore Rachel McKane.

There was a big enough increase in sexual assaults, Marquette public safety officials sent an email to students to be safe.

“We are saddened, but grateful that our students are coming forward, “ said Lynn O’Brien, Coordinator for the Sexual Assault Violence and Prevention Center.

Marquette would not give us specifics about the assaults, but according to police reports in almost every case the victim knew the assailant.

Eleven sexual assaults were reported since April 1st, but not all of them happened in the past month. Some date back to September, but were just reported.

“If our students are reporting at higher rates it’s because they are getting the message from us that we are taking this seriously, we are going to do something about it and we’re concerned and we want to keep them safe,” O’Brien said.

Marquette came under scrutiny for not reporting sexual assaults two years ago. O’Brien says the university is working hard to make sure students have the resources they need.

“They have access to services at the counseling center, campus ministry, and really any other department on campus that they feel would help them in their healing,” O’Brien said.

Students say they appreciate the safety reminder.

“It’s always better to be careful and at least they are sending out a good message to students,” said Sophomore Emily Klar.

Find more information here.