4 Things Rolling Stone May Have Gotten Wrong In Its UVA Gang Rape Article

University Virginia Campus Students Phi Kappa Psi FraternityAP Photo/Steve HelberStudents walk by the Phi Kappa Psi fraternity house on the University of Virginia campus.

Rolling Stone magazine has backtracked from an explosive article last month on sexual assault at the University of Virginia, saying there were “discrepancies” in their original report.

The Washington Post has a much more detailed look at some of the potential inaccuracies in Rolling Stone’s article, which was based largely around an anonymous UVA student’s account of an alleged seven-person gang rape at a fraternity house party. Rolling Stone received criticism in the wake of the article’s publication for not reaching out or speaking to the alleged student rapists.

Jackie spoke to The Post in-person on Thursday, telling the newspaper that the “Rolling Stone account of her attack was truthful but also acknowledged that some details in the article might not be accurate.”

In addition to speaking with Jackie, The Post spoke with the lawyer for the accused UVA fraternity Phi Kappa Psi, as well as several of Jackie’s friends and other relevant UVA students. Via The Post, here are the major reported issues with Rolling Stone’s article on UVA sexual assault culture:

  • The Phi Psi statement claims that no party was held at the house on on Sept. 28, 2012, the night that Jackie allegedly was gang raped after being invited to a date function.
  • The Post reports that fraternity officials said that “no members of the fraternity were employed at the university’s Aquatic Fitness Center during that time frame — a detail Jackie provided in her account to Rolling Stone and in interviews with The Washington Post — and that no member of the house matches the description detailed in the Rolling Stone account.”
  • The Rolling Stone article suggested the alleged gang rape was some sort of pledging process, quoting one rapist egging another on by saying, “Don’t you want to be a brother?” The Phi Psi statement also notes that “our Chapter’s pledging and initiation periods, as required by the University and Inter-Fraternity Council, take place solely in the spring semester and not in the fall semester … Moreover, no ritualized sexual assault is part of our pledging or initiation process.”
  • There also appears to be some question over the identity of the alleged assailant, whose name Jackie revealed to friends this week for the first time. The Post reports that her friends “determined that the student that Jackie had named was not a member of Phi Kappa Psi and that other details about his background did not match up with information Jackie had disclosed earlier about her perpetrator.”

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