NORMAN, Okla. (KFOR) — Officials with the University of Oklahoma say they have concluded an investigation into a fraternity following allegations of a ‘rape initiation.’
It all started in August when a rumor began swirling around the OU campus that potential members of the Beta Theta Pi fraternity must sexually assault someone to show their brotherhood to the organization.
Immediately, students with the fraternity denied those allegations.
However, the university said its Office of Student Conduct would conduct an investigation, but said “no evidence has been found to support the claims.”
On Wednesday, the university confirmed to KFOR that it had concluded its investigation.
“The university has concluded its review and no evidence was found to support the claims. As a result, no charges will be filed against the organization or any of its members, and this matter is considered closed. The university takes all allegations and incidents of sexual misconduct very seriously and is committed to creating a safe campus environment for our students, faculty and staff,” a statement by OU read.
Beta Theta Pi President Sam Atkinson said this just shows how a rumor on social media can spread.
“In late August, certain inflammatory rumors concerning our fraternity were circulated in social media and reported by The OU Daily. We stated then, and we restate today, that those rumors were irresponsible, obviously and absurdly false, and extremely defamatory.
With our encouragement and cooperation, the University and OU Police Department investigated the allegations and found no evidence whatsoever to support them or any wrongdoing by our fraternity. In fact there is no evidence of any link at all between the allegations and our fraternity or its members.
This affair concerned a fictional story that never happened and which began as a ridiculous rumor irresponsibly asserted in social media by someone with absolutely no factual foundation. It’s a lesson about how social media can be misused and how the truth can get lost among rumor, innuendo and herd mentality.
Our fraternity takes issues of sexual assault very seriously, and we are committed to promoting the safety and well-being of all students at the University of Oklahoma.