A freshman female reported she was sexually assaulted by an upperclassman male in the Village area of campus on Friday, according to Assistant Director of the Department of Public Safety John Ritchie.
The Fairfield Citizen stated the student said she was forced to perform oral sex on the alleged assailant. The student reported that she did not voluntarily consume alcohol or drugs, but that she may have been drugged during an on-campus party.
The isolated incident was reported to DPS around midnight, according to Ritchie, who confirmed the Fairfield Citizen’s report. The investigation was turned over to the Fairfield Police Department.
Ritchie could not comment on whether the student was under the influence of drugs or alcohol, stressing that the incident is “under investigation and there is no threat to the campus community.” He added that both individuals involved have been identified.
According to the Fairfield Citizen, the female student reported that her speech was slurred, and she felt “lethargic.” She was taken to St. Vincent’s Medical Center in Bridgeport for further treatment, the article added.
To his knowledge, Ritchie said the male student has been cooperative throughout the investigation.
“It’s a classic ‘he said, she said’ situation,” Ritchie added.
When asked what steps students can take to be more careful, Ritchie suggested that students be aware of their surroundings, travel with friends and lock their doors.
“When you go out with your friends, come home with your friends,” Ritchie recommended, adding the importance of bystander intervention.
The incident comes in light of a roundtable discussion with Sen. Richard Blumenthal, who cited Fairfield University as one of the three universities in Connecticut with policies that best prevent campus sexual assault. Blumenthal visited Fairfield two weeks prior for the second time in six months.
Having Blumenthal visit Fairfield to discuss sexual assault raises awareness to what is “still a real problem,” said Ritchie.
Fairfield Police Department could not be reached for comment at this time.
Robert Joyce contributed to this report.