Reported sexual assault

University Police are continuing to investigate the reported sexual assault from earlier this week. Based on the investigation at this point, evidence suggests that there is no imminent threat to the campus community. In alignment with trauma-informed investigative techniques and in order to best support and respect the victim, cases like this are handled with sensitivity and can take time. This will be the last update on this case unless information impacting the safety of the campus community becomes available.  

U Safety continues its vigilant patrolling across campus. Courtesy escorts (main campus: 801-585-2677; hospital: 801-581-2294) and the SafeRide program remain available to campus community members.  

U Police continue to investigate last night’s reported sexual assault, and police are following up on leads. To be clear, the victim is not affiliated with the University of Utah. A healthcare worker took the report and submitted it to U Police on behalf of the victim. The specific location on campus where the assault was reported to have occurred is still unknown. A University Safety crisis support specialist continues to support the victim. An update will be provided on Friday, Feb. 5, unless new information becomes available sooner. To respect the privacy of the victim, who is a minor, available information will be limited. 

U Safety continues its vigilant patrolling across campus. Courtesy escorts (main campus: 801-585-2677; hospital: 8015812294) and the SafeRide program remain available to campus community members.  

Thu Feb 04, 2021 2:44 AM

On Thursday, February 4, 2021, just after midnight, the University of Utah Police Department received a delayed report of a sexual assault that occurred on campus between 8:30-9:30 p.m. on February 3. The report came from a University of Utah healthcare worker to the police. The victim was on their way to meet someone on campus and reported that two unidentified males approached from behind a dumpster and proceeded to sexually assault the victim. The victim is not affiliated with the university. University Safety crisis support specialists are working with the victim. Police are continuing to investigate the situation and anticipate providing an update to the campus community before noon on February 4.

Description of the persons of interest: There are no additional details about the persons of interest available at this time.

Prevention and Safety Tips: This safety warning is being issued as part of the University of Utah’s efforts to provide timely notifications about serious or ongoing threats to the campus community. While it may be distressing to learn about this incident, it is being shared so you can best protect yourself. Responsibility for a crime lies with the person committing it; however, there are some things you can do to reduce your risk of experiencing crime. Please remember:

  • If you or someone you know is a victim of interpersonal violence, call the LINK line at 1-800-897-LINK (5465) or visit the Center for Excellence in Women’s Health website.
  • Consent is required for all sexual interactions. Consent cannot be granted if a person is under the influence of alcohol, coerced, or under duress or force. If you are unsure if a person wants to engage in sexual behavior, DO NOT DO IT.
  • Coercion includes “wearing a person down” until they say yes. This is not consent.
  • The vast majority of sexual assault occurs between two people who know each other. Usually victims of sexual assault know, and sometimes trust, the person who hurt them.
  • If you notice one of your friends ignoring another person’s boundaries, remove your friend from the situation and tell them their behavior is not OK.
  • If you’re meeting someone new, let others know when and where you’re meeting and plan to meet in a public setting. Trust your gut if anything feels off.
  • Use the U’s SafeRide program or a courtesy escort (main campus: 801-585-2677; University Hospital: 801-581-2294) to get around campus.
  • Let a family member or friend know when you’re going somewhere and your estimated time of arrival or return. This allows them to notify police as quickly as possible if there is a problem.
  • If you feel uneasy, leave the area. Go to a safe location and notify University Police at 801-585-2677, or in case of an emergency, dial 911.
  • Take care of one another and consider stopping and being present until help arrives in situations where someone may be experiencing harm. The person causing harm may stop if other people are around.
  • Report any suspicious activities to University Police at 801-585-2677. Be prepared to provide as many details as possible.
  • Be aware of your surroundings and avoid distractions, especially when walking alone. Try to avoid isolated or dark areas. Walk in groups whenever you can—there is safety in numbers.
  • If a person approaches you in a way that makes you uncomfortable, maintain a distance and be observant; if they are in a vehicle, get the license plate number, make, model, color, and any additional identifiers, such as damage to the vehicle and direction of flight, if possible.

Support and Resources

Updates will be posted at alert.utah.edu.