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Rape charges dropped against University of Richmond student

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University of Richmond

The state has dropped felony charges of rape, strangulation and malicious wounding against Kyle Kressler, who was a University of Richmond student last semester.

The charges were dropped at a hearing Friday in Richmond District Court. Kressler’s attorney, Ted Bruns, said his client didn’t commit the crime but declined to go into further detail to explain the turn of events.

Bruns described the arrest and criminal proceedings as a nightmare, saying the damage to Kressler’s reputation would be impossible to repair. Kressler declined to comment.

The University of Richmond is continuing a Title IX investigation into the allegations, Bruns said. When a college student reports a sexual assault, the student can pursue a Title IX investigation and criminal investigation.

Cynthia Price, spokesperson for UR, would not comment on Kressler’s status as a student, other than saying he is not currently on campus. UR’s spring semester began Monday.

At the time of the arrest, Price would not say whether Kressler lived on campus and whether university policy allows a student charged with sexual assault to stay enrolled or continue living in university housing.

Whether a student remains on campus during a Title IX proceeding depends on the circumstances of the case, Price said.

Kressler, a New Jersey resident, was arrested Oct. 25. According to the university’s crime log, an incident took place on the event of Oct. 23 at Gray Court, a coed upper-class dormitory on campus, and a report was made an hour later. The student paper identified Kressler as a sophomore.

The next day, university police told the school community that a sexual assault had taken place and the people involved knew one another, reported UR’s student newspaper, The Collegian. The university identified the person who made the report as female but did not say if she is a student. She has not publicly identified herself.

If a UR student proceeds with a grievance, a university board determines whether the respondent broke university rules. A preponderance of evidence is required to find the respondent responsible. If it determines a violation occurred, the board determines the punishment.

A student can also choose to resolve a Title IX complaint through mediation, in which students seek a compromise. That process cannot result in the expulsion of the respondent, according to the university.

Alison Martin, an assistant commonwealth’s attorney, did not respond to a request for comment.

(804) 649-6109

Twitter: @EricKolenich



Eric Kolenich writes about higher education, health systems and more for the Richmond Times-Dispatch. He joined the newspaper in 2009 and spent 11 years in the Sports section. (804) 649-6109

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