Chief Longo

Submitted on Mar 23, 2015 by Jim Sherlock (Col ’66)

Just watched the press conference in which Charlottesville Police Chief Timothy Longo showed how an incident can be handled professionally and thoroughly as he shared his assessment of the facts surrounding the slanderous Rolling Stone article. He did not say that the University made his job harder and unwittingly enabled the slander by not sending the woman to the police the first time she raised the issue with the school’s counselors, but I will. The University needs to thoroughly rethink the rape counseling process. Certainly the school should offer emotional support, but when a crime is alleged, law enforcement must be allowed to deal with it in parallel with the support efforts. Chief Longo is one of those whose professionalism and dedication to duty was cast into doubt by President Sullivan when she immediately petitioned the Governor for an independent investigation of the ABC incident at the corner last weekend. She owes him an apology.

Comments (6):

  1. Mark - College 96, Law 99 on said:

    I saw the report as well. It seems that Ms. Sullivan owes an apology to every student and alum who is a member or was a member of a fraternity. It also seems to me the additional restriction she imposed should be lifted. If she fails to do these things, it seems to me the students should pursue 1983 claims against the University and her for violating their rights to free association, as well as other claims for the actions she took in response to the Jackie story. The liability here is far more clear than the University’s liability in the Wide Awake case, in which the U.S. Supreme Court determined the University violated the rights of a student publication.

  2. Mike Fitzpatrick (Engr '72) on said:

    While I can certainly see where the request for an outside investigation could be viewed as a put down to the local police, there is the possibility of other motives.

    I have not lived in C’ville since attending UVa, so I don’t claim to be an expert regarding the current local political and racial “climate”. Perhaps there is a faction that for whatever reason believe the local police are not “fair”. If the local police then do the investigation and come to a conclusion that faction does not like, I’m sure you would hear something like … ” Well, what did you expect from them … the whole thing was a sham.”. By having an independent investigation, you likely eliminate that contention.

  3. Mark on said:

    It’s Time For Ms. Sullivan to Apologize. I earned both my undergraduate and law degrees at Virginia. I was surprised that the University jumped the gun and presumed that the members of Phi Kappa Psi were guilty before an investigation and imposed penalties on the entire fraternity system. Doing so violates the rights of those students and brands not just current members but alumni as well as supporters of sexual violence. Based on the police investigation, it is time for Ms. Sullivan to apologize to all of the men who she indirectly accused of supporting sexual violence against women when she shut the fraternity system down and imposed restrictions on fraternities that are not imposed on other student organizations. I strongly encourage Ms. Sullivan to read the Supreme Court’s Wide Awake decision, in which the Supreme Court ruled that the University discriminated against a student group based on the views of its members, and study the fallout from the Duke lacrosse scandal. If she fails to take action to remedy the wrongs she has done, I encourage all alumni to stop giving money to the University, as I intend to do.

    • Belinda M. Barham on said:

      Mark, with all due respect to your views, victims and perpetrators have voices and they have the right to use their voices and be heard. The article in Rolling Stone was not a trial, it was a story. Witnesses could come forward at any time regarding that matter, or never. All of the parties have rights and should be allowed to exercise them in whatever ways they see fit. There is no statute of limitations on rape in Virginia (and current statistics are that AT LEAST 1 in 3 women are raped). Do you know why there is no statute of limitations? Because the victim of such a crime may not be able to remember all of the details right away (due to extreme trauma or extraordinarily potent drugs) or prepare a case right away — it can take years. What’s your hurry? Why the mad rush to be both jury and judge in a case that has yet to be filed? So what if a STORY was written? Let the “offended” parties exercise their own rights and allow the legal process to unfold in due course.

      As for the “fallout” from the Duke lacrosse scandal, what is your point? Even if a specific case did not meet certain standards of proof for its day, does it follow that no crime(s) occurred or that such a culture of rape did/does not exist? Are you denying someone else the right to pursue justice?

      Why should President Sullivan apologize? Really, be specific. She is not accused of any crime and she is certainly privy to more facts on these matters than most of us possess. It is certainly within her rights to voice her own truth on such (and any) subjects. It is very easy to “go after” a leader when you have not earned that position of authority and responsibility. As for those parties who may have been offended, let them pursue their rights in a legal forum if they so choose.

      Perhaps your years at UVA were 100% “honor code” worthy by everyone. If so, I am happy for you. Unfortunately, most offenders/criminals do not confess and haul themselves into a judiciary forum or any court of law — and cameras are not always rolling on the guilty.

      Maybe UVA could spare a little bit of football revenue and install security cameras around every building and find out what really goes on in the shadows. If it means saving one life, I’m all for it.

  4. Ed Barbour on said:

    All lives matter. I am so tired of the race card of rush to judgement. It is becoming if you are black you get a bye for bad behavior. Yes, there is excessive force for my nephew Ramond Rivière shot 4 times by ACPD. But he was white and it wasn’t news.

  5. Rich Fidler (Coll '70) on said:

    Power of the purse. I think the Alumni Fund should feel the disapproval of all those who are tired of political correctness run amok and the mere existence of all these “grievance studies” departments that pretend to call themselves academic disciplines.