The Cal Poly University Police Department (UPD) announced Tuesday that it will not pursue charges against the suspects in the two reported Poly Canyon Village sexual assaults.
University Police Chief Bill Watton said the decision to not press charges was due to a lack of evidence for the cases.
“After the investigation, we don’t have enough evidence to pursue criminal charges,” Watton said. “There is a high threshold to meet (for sexual assault). It has to be proven beyond a reasonable amount.”
Watton said that although no charges will be pressed, this does not mean the reported crimes did not occur.
“This does not mean the perpetrator is or is not culpable, or that the victim is lying in any way,” Watton said. “This is just a very high standard to meet. The university will now do an investigation.”
According to Watton, Student Rights and Responsibilities will now investigate the allegations and decide what, if any, action will be taken.
“Student Rights and Responsibilities will look into it to see if they will pursue,” Watton said. “The discipline (if they decide to) can be anything from assigning an assignment to the person, or they could be facing a possible expulsion.”
Watton said he understood how the decision to not press charges could make it difficult for survivors of sexual assault to report the crime.
“I know it will make it hard for survivors to come forward,” he said. “If we could pursue charges we would, but it’s just one of those things where if we don’t have enough evidence, we can’t charge them. We still encourage survivors to come forward.”
Officials in charge of the investigation could not be reached for comment as of press time.