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Posted on Sat, Jan 19, 2013 : 5:13 p.m.

U-M police make arrest in sexual assault at West Quad

By Cole Bertsos

After receiving an anonymous tip, the U-M Police Department arrested a suspect in the Jan. 13 sexual assault reported at West Quadrangle residence hall.

Diane Brown, spokesperson for the police department, said the suspect was arrested Friday night. He was released Saturday morning as police continue to gather more information. He was not arraigned.


A picture police received after the assault was reported.

Courtesy of U-M Police

Further information was not available. previously reported that the incident took place between 12:45 and 1:30 a.m. in a lower level common area of the dormitory. The victim told police the incident took place after she was walked home by the assailant, whom she had met at an off-campus party.

The police previously released video and an image of the man they believed to be the assailant.



Wed, Jan 23, 2013 : 8:07 p.m.

All, please note that the person is *only* an accused right now and we don't know his side of the story. Most of the comments I see here are sympathetic towards the girl, why so? Wait till you hear both sides. I looked at the security video of this person climbing down the stairs, he surely didn't look like someone running away after committing a crime. He was going about at a normal speed.


Mon, Jan 21, 2013 : 12:15 a.m.

All this armchair quarterbacking is idiotic...have you all forgotten ABOUT THE VICTIM?? I am praying for her healing! Are you?


Sun, Jan 20, 2013 : 1:12 a.m.

Such poor reporting. Granted the facts probably aren't gathered, but if the process of arresting and release would we not know more? Like a name? Was the person a student? Is access to the police report available? If the UM Police arrested the person, where did they take the person to be released? UM has their own jail now too? Maybe this would be a duty for Kinsey to report on instead of his pass memories of any importance.


Sun, Jan 20, 2013 : 7:07 p.m.

The FOIA law has an exception for open police investigation. If a case is open, they do not have to release anything other than what is required by the Clery Act. Racerx, any PD can arrest a person on probable cause, take them to their station for processing and interviewing and then release them. No jail necessary. You release based on a number of things, most important is your case complete and that release will not jeopardize others. You put an innocent person in jail without proper cause, your chances of being sued improve tremendously.


Sun, Jan 20, 2013 : 11:26 a.m.

racerx....I agree.What color shoes was he wearing ? was he wearing shoes ? how tall was he ? was he transported via squad care or unmarked vehicle ? what was the moon phase ? does a very poor job of reporting

Matt Cooper

Sun, Jan 20, 2013 : 4:41 a.m.

Gun registrations are public domain. Nothing unethical or illegal about it. However, releasing someone's name to the public domain before any charges are filed can be a very sticky thing.


Sun, Jan 20, 2013 : 2:48 a.m.

" Like a name? " - you should keep in mind the very pertinent fact that releasing names of arrestees is not permitted. For the reason: should the arrestee later be exonerated or ANOTHER suspect convicted - those releasing the name(s), including the city whose authority they acted under would be subject to some mighty hefty lawsuits. This is Michigan- not New York (where said practice is right now producing some problems for a publisher dumb enough to publish the names and addresses of completely innocent citizens who happened to register their guns). Just think of releasing suspect names as "bad juju" if this concept is too tough to tussle with.


Sun, Jan 20, 2013 : 2:42 a.m.

Wow - how would you like to be "arrested for rape" and have your name splashed all over the internet? Oh and by the way, you're innocent. But that's ok - everybody who searches your name in the future will see that you were "arrested for rape."

Dog Guy

Sun, Jan 20, 2013 : 1:36 a.m.

In calling for a Kinsey Report on this matter, racerx, do you one by Rich Kinsey or Alfred Kinsey?


Sun, Jan 20, 2013 : 12:03 a.m. was he arrested, released, but not arraigned? Shouldn't you wait until you have evidence of something before you arrest someone?

Matt Cooper

Sun, Jan 20, 2013 : 7:21 p.m.

The Oxford Companion to American Law defines probable cause as "information sufficient to warrant a prudent person's belief that the wanted individual had committed a crime (for an arrest warrant) or that evidence of a crime or contraband would be found in a search (for a search warrant)". "Probable cause" is a stronger standard of evidence than a reasonable suspicion, but weaker than what is required to secure a criminal conviction. Even hearsay can supply probable cause if it is from a reliable source or supported by other evidence, according to the Aguilar–Spinelli test.


Sun, Jan 20, 2013 : 6:59 p.m.

You can be arrested with just probable cause. You can be lodged without a warrant as long as the police get one in a reason time and in Wash Co., that time is very short. So if the police do not think the case is strong enough, you release and submit. If the police think the perp will commit another assault, you jail. Also if you believe like I do there are two sides to every story you don't have to arrest at all to interview a suspect. Just ask them to come on down for a talk. See what they say and follow up appropriately. Perhaps they needed and now have DNA and will get the warrant then the results come back. To be arraigned, the prosecutor's office has to determine a crime was committed, there is probable cause the identified suspect committed the crime, and that the case is "winnable" at trial. Winning means you can prove a sexual assault. This is basic and I am not saying it applies here. Cases like this can be difficult to prove. I am aware of another where the victim said she was assaulted but was so intoxicated when it occurred she could not recall the incident, particularly when the suspect says what happened was mutual. I think UMPD is handling this appropriately with the info that has been released.

Robert Granville

Sun, Jan 20, 2013 : 2:05 p.m.

Happens all the time. Police over step their authority and arrest when there is not enough (or any) evidence to file charges.

Matt Cooper

Sun, Jan 20, 2013 : 4:39 a.m.

TB76: " An arraignment can only be held if the prosecutor contacts the relevant court to get one scheduled." Actually it's not that simple. For an arraignment it is not just a matter of scheduling the proceeding. Actual criminal charges have to be filed first. Minor point, I know, but you can't arraign without charges.

Rod Johnson

Sun, Jan 20, 2013 : 4:30 a.m.

(Whoops, comment appended to wrong thread, see below)

Rod Johnson

Sun, Jan 20, 2013 : 4:29 a.m.

"releasing names of arrestees is not permitted"--can you clarify? I see the names of people who have been arrested but not tried yet all the time.


Sun, Jan 20, 2013 : 4:05 a.m.

Forgot to mention: the arrest in this case was based on an anonymous tip. That too is fairly routine - the tip may turn out to be bogus but at least the police have cause and the chance to check it out. An arraignment can only be held if the prosecutor contacts the relevant court to get one scheduled. Judges: do not just wait around for the Bat Signal , they demand good reason for rousing them for an arraignment. ;-)


Sun, Jan 20, 2013 : 3:53 a.m.

That's a technicality - which police routinely skip over if there's ANY reason to interrogate the suspect and get an eyeball-to-eyeball look at him(her). They HAVE TO release any suspect if nothing further is found to support a case with the prosecutor's office. But they may pick up hints that the suspect is hiding something, or find excuse to ask for a search warrant.


Sat, Jan 19, 2013 : 11:37 p.m.

Good job police, sharing what you know with the public often times does help find who you are looking for. Most people want to help the police to catch criminals--wounder if it was a former friend who ID him ?

Detached Observer

Sat, Jan 19, 2013 : 10:32 p.m.

Rapists are scum and should be severely punished. On the other hand, "innocent until proven guilty." So folks, let's all keep our heads and let the wheels of Justice turn.

Matt Cooper

Sun, Jan 20, 2013 : 7:15 p.m.

I understand his sentiment, tdw, but my point is that contrary to his statement that "the legal definition is too broad to understand the severity of what transpired here", the legal definitions of what constitute criminal sexual conduct are quite clear and unambiguous. The knowledge of what transpired here has nothing whatever to do with legal definitions until and unless charges are brought, at which point the prosecutor will either prove his case or not at trial. Secondly, if this young man ends up accused of 'sexual assault', which is not a criminal charge...well, under what other name should it be called (since Dr. Fate seems to not like the phrase 'sexual assault')?


Sun, Jan 20, 2013 : 3:22 p.m.

if you recall it was roughly between 45 mins the police first said the attack happen. So much more then a good night kiss happen. Maybe the guy is claiming she consented. Lets just give this case some time, least its moving along and the police do have a person of interest to investigate


Sun, Jan 20, 2013 : 11:15 a.m.

Matt....I think the Dr is saying that just the term " sexual assault " is quite broad as there are 4 degrees.Even then it can be confusing.I can't completely remember but I know that 2 and 4 are more severe than 1 and 3 ( that could be visa versa ).Sexual assault is one of the more complex areas of criminal law.It can range from unwanted touching to forcible rape

Matt Cooper

Sun, Jan 20, 2013 : 4:36 a.m.

Dr. Fate, I would suggest you familiarize yourself with Michigan criminal codes regarding criminal sexual conduct. They aren't ambiguous nor are they overly vague. I've personally never heard of anyone being prosecuted for an attempted goodnight kiss (assuming of course, that that's all it was, and didn't go any further once the woman said "no"). So, being that "Rapists are scum and should be severely punished" is obviously his personal opinion, I'm not sure what part of his comment you are in complete disagreement with.

Dr. Fate

Sun, Jan 20, 2013 : 2:39 a.m.

Completely agree with Detached's post. My personal peeve is that "sexual assault" can range from an attempted kiss to rape and everything in between, yet the majority of people assume it's rape. It's far too broad to accurately judge if this kid is a drunken smoocher or a rapist. I understand not wanting to give details for the victim's sake but the legal definition is too broad to understand the severity of what transpired here.


Sat, Jan 19, 2013 : 11:40 p.m.

DNA will nail him if he did it.