LOGAN, Utah — A Utah State University student is speaking out after claiming the school did not help after she was sexually assaulted.
“It's like a punch to the gut,” said USU student Kaytri Flint. “It's very lonely.”
Flint says a USU football player raped her, and she then went to USU's Title IX office and Office of Equity for help.
“I was advised at one point by someone in the Title IX office to leave the school because I might have an accidental run-in with my rapist,” said Flint. “That was my safety procedure was to avoid the TSC, avoid the library, avoid Old Main, avoid all these big buildings… If I'm going to be a successful student, I'm going to be in those buildings.”
Flint says she was assaulted on Nov. 26, 2019. She says for seven months, she went through an investigation with USU, and in July 2020, the decision panel told her the student-athlete violated school policy. They told her the next step was to hear back from USU President Noelle Cockett. But after five months, Flint heard nothing, so she reached out. Flint says Cockett responded stating the case would not move forward.
“I felt like nothing I had gone through was important to anyone,” said Flint. “I felt like they had, at that point, taken just as much from me as the rapist did. I felt completely violated and ignored, so I was just boiling. I was so mad.”
School officials say they cannot discuss specifics of the case.
“Under our processes, privacy of these investigations is a requirement,” said USU President Noelle Cockett.
“There are moments where maybe we are not caring in the way that people want us to or caring in the way that we are able or want to,” added USU Office of Equity Senior Prevention Specialist Emmalee Fishburn. “I think it’s important to come back to that humility piece of just recognizing that processes might not go the way we want them to. Processes might not go that way that they were intended to, and we are constantly learning and growing.”
Cockett says no matter the outcome, she wants what's best for students.
“It hurts when I think that someone feels that we didn’t do enough,” said Cockett. “I just think something got lost, something got missed, that that process and that communication conveyed to that individual that we didn’t care. It's not true.”
But Flint says she doesn't see it.
“I remember being in the Title IX office more than I was in class, more than I was hanging out with my friends," she said. "So it was like I really did overextend myself and I have nothing to show for this."
Flint has filed a lawsuit against the university, seeking compensation for emotional distress, medical and therapy expenses, and tuition.
If you or someone you know is a victim of sexual abuse, you can call the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 800-656-4673 or the online chat hotline at rainn.org/resources.