Columbia University says victim stymied sex assault investigation


A Columbia University student who says she suffered two sexual assaults in her Manhattan dorm room made it virtually “impossible” for officials to investigate her claims, school lawyers said Tuesday.


Amelia Roskin-Frazee filed a federal lawsuit last March saying the Ivy League university inadequately responded to her allegations of a Oct. 5, 2015, rape and a Dec. 14, 2015, sexual assault.


Columbia moved to dismiss the case in June, saying Roskin-Frazee told a Student Conduct and Community Standards office case manager on Jan. 19, 2016, that she didn’t want to officially report the assaults to administrators.


According to court papers, she didn’t want to make a formal report because she didn’t trust admins would do anything “based on her prior experiences with Columbia administrators,” with whom she unofficially discussed her rape.


She also told administrators not to contact her again about the allegations, said university lawyer Roberta Kaplan.


While the Daily News does not typically name sex assault victims, Roskin-Frazee previously agreed that her name could be used.


Now 20, Roskin-Frazee officially reported the alleged assaults on Aug. 8, 2016. But by that time, Columbia had recorded over video surveillance footage for the dates in question, Kaplan said.


Meanwhile, Roskin-Frazee told administrators she had thrown out notes allegedly left by her attacker, and she told investigators she didn’t want them interviewing her roommates, Kaplan told Manhattan Federal Judge George Daniels.

Columbia moved to dismiss the case saying Roskin-Frazee told a Student Conduct and Community Standards office case manager that she didn’t want to officially report the assaults to administrators.

Columbia moved to dismiss the case saying Roskin-Frazee told a Student Conduct and Community Standards office case manager that she didn’t want to officially report the assaults to administrators.

(Shawn Inglima/for New York Daily News)


“It was all but impossible for Columbia to conduct a meaningful investigation,” Kaplan said at one point.


Daniels asked why Columbia was obligated to investigate Roskin-Frazee’s allegations before August 2016, when she made an official report — especially after she demanded in January 2016 that administrators not contact her.


Roskin-Frazee’s lawyer, Alex Zalkin, said his client had said that out of frustration, but that Columbia still had an obligation to her — and to the greater student community — to act.


Police sources confirmed to the Daily News that Roskin-Frazee reported the alleged attacks to the Manhattan special victims division in January 2017.


A police spokesman told The News on Tuesday that “after conferral with the Manhattan DA’s office, the case has been closed.”


Roskin-Frazee previously said she waited to file a police report because she’s opposed to incarceration.

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