The federal government has opened a fifth investigation on how K-State handles reports of sexual assault off campus.
The U.S. Department of Education’s office of civil rights opened the newest investigation at K-State on March 27, according to the office’s most recent list of open Title IX sexual violence investigations. Overall, the department is investigating 319 cases at 229 post-secondary institutions.
Other Kansas universities under investigation include the University of Kansas with two and Washburn University with one.
Cornell University leads the country with six such ongoing investigations. K-State is tied for second with Indiana University-Bloomington.
The office of civil rights would not release any information related to the new investigation. K-State officials declined to comment on Tuesday.
K-State’s policy for investigating reports of sexual assault off campus has come under scrutiny.
Two former K-State students are currently suing the university for not investigating their reports of being raped at K-State fraternity houses. In that lawsuit, the students contend the university is responsible for investigating the reports. Earlier this year, a judge allowed the Title IX portion of the case and whether the university is responsible to investigate reports of rape at fraternities to continue while dismissing other claims. The judge said the plaintiffs had made a plausible case that K-State has substantial control over off-campus fraternities.
K-State officials said at the time that the case was only continuing to the “discovery phase” because of a procedure that requires the court to treat the plaintiffs claims’ as fact, and K-State believes the evidence of the case will show the university does not have “sufficient control” of off-campus fraternities.