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Interim Sexual Assault Policy
Interim Sexual Assault Complaint Procedure
Sexual assault is a non-consensual sexual act involving force, manipulation, or
coercion; it is an act of aggression, violence and power. The perpetrator can be a
stranger, relative, acquaintance, or date. The University of Houston is committed
to providing a working and learning environment free from sexual assault. A sexual
assault is an illegal criminal act which can devastate victims physically, violate their
sense of safety and trust, and interfere with personal and educational goals; as such, it
can damage the educational atmosphere for the entire university community. Sexual
assault is a serious and flagrant violation of the university rules of conduct for faculty,
staff and students and will not be tolerated. The University will vigorously investigate
all allegations of sexual assault; it will treat victims with respect, make their legal
rights and options clear, and fully cooperate with them in their exercising of those
rights. The University will continue to sponsor programs to educate faculty, staff, and
students about sexual assault: myths, prevention, treatment services, legal remedies,
date rape, and other forms of sexual misconduct. Procedures protecting the rights of
sexual assault victims and those accused of sexual assault have been established, are
readily available, and will be enforced rigorously.
Definition
A stranger or acquaintance commits sexual assault through forcible sodomy, forcible
sexual penetration, however slight, of another person’s mouth, anal or genital opening
with any object. These acts must be committed without the victim’s consent either
by force, threat of force or violence, intimidation or through the use of the victim’s
mental or physical helplessness of which the accused was aware or should have been
aware. Sexual assault also includes the touching of an unwilling person’s intimate
parts (defined as genitalia, groin, breast or breasts, or buttocks or clothing covering
them) or forcing an unwilling person to touch another’s intimate parts. These acts
must be committed either by force, threat, intimidation or through the use of the
victim’s mental or physical helplessness of which the accused was aware or should
have been aware.
Rape is a form of sexual assault involving sexual intercourse without the victim’s
consent. It includes being coerced through force or threats of force, or having sexual
intercourse with someone who is unconscious or incapable of giving consent.
Comments and Statutory References
Sexual assault is non-consensual acts involving psychological manipulation, physical
force, or coercion. It is an act of aggression and violence, and a crime punishable
under the laws of the State of Texas by fines and incarceration up to 20 years of