On sexual assault: letters from the community

For city residents, fear is prevalent

Having lived in Charlottesville since November,1964 and having my family's residence in the University of Virginia neighborhood (just off Rugby Road) I have witnessed some rather shocking and disturbing behavior on the part of UVA students, particularly at fraternity houses in and around "Mad Bowl" and the Grady Avenue and Rugby Road area.

Everything from "streaking" to the out of control behavior during "Easters" weekends. Drunkenness, fights, indifference to private property, disturbing noise, mistreatment of women, unacceptable mountains of litter; it runs the gamut ...

Raising two children, both my wife and I were in constant vigilance for the safety of our son and daughter. Our daughter had an incident on University Circle where some rowdy young men tried to accost her and her friend, trying to get into her car. She only managed to escape by going the wrong direction on a one way street and received a citation (later dismissed) for her action.

The latest alleged incident of a gang rape by seven men in a UVA sanctioned fraternity house is extremely frightening to many of my neighbors with young teenage daughters. If true, and these criminals get away with this, the fear my neighbors feel is justified.

The alleged criminal violence of these young men could appropriately be called "Taliban-Lite." Attacking and violating an innocent woman is really no different than the behavior we condemn in any nation...

I must also state: the large majority of UVA students I have known as neighbors — and in a few cases as employees — have been exemplary and would surely be deeply offended by the allegations reported in the "Rolling Stones" magazine report.

There simply must be complete transparency and unflagging pursuit of these criminals and likewise a constant vigilance with severe penalties for any hint of such behavior in the future.

Sincerely,

Harry Tenney

Charlottesville


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