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Wednesday rape report at JSU latest of several since January

Bibb Graves Hall at JSU

Bibb Graves Hall on the campus of Jacksonville State University.

Police were investigating Saturday after receiving a report of a rape Wednesday on the Jacksonville State University campus, and learning of several others since January. 

According to the university’s online crime log, six incidents were reported between Jan. 1 and Sept. 3. The incidents reportedly took place on campus at Dixon Hall, Meehan Hall, Sparkman Hall and in the Rowe Hall parking lot and off campus on Mountain Street.

Calhoun Cleburne Major Crimes Unit investigator Jay Harrington said an incident was first reported to Jacksonville police from an address west of the campus. 

Harrington said Jacksonville passed the case to the major crimes unit, which learned through their investigation of more possible rapes.

“Throughout the investigation, it has led me onto JSU’s campus, where the rest of that was discovered,” Harrington said.

Harrington declined to comment on the number of suspects and victims involved in the case.

University administrators said Thursday in an email to students police were investigating criminal activity involving non-students coming on campus and contacting students “by electronic means.”

Administrators in the email urged students to be cautious while using social media.

It is unknown if the emails are directly related to the case.

Harrington said Saturday the campus is safe.

“There is no rapist out there on the run,” Harrington said. “It's an isolated incident. We have it under control.”

Police plan to send the evidence they gathered during the investigation to a Calhoun County grand jury, Harrington said Saturday.

If a suspect is indicted, Harrington said, they could be charged with second-degree rape.

Under state law, second-degree rape is a Class B felony, punishable by up to two decades in prison and a maximum fine of $30,000 upon conviction.

According to Harrington, the incidents are under investigation by the major crimes unit and university police.


Contact Staff Writer Mia Kortright at 256-235-3563.