Assault Trial Postponed; Campus Policies Remain Largely Unchanged

BY KEVIN DIFFILY // APRIL 12, 2013 //

A hearing today for three men accused of sexually assaulting a Curry student in January was delayed until Aug. 29.

Shakarus D. Semexant, 20, and Kensley Metellus, 19, both of Malden, as well as Justin Oliver Castor, 19, of Arlington were charged with aggravated rape, conspiracy to commit rape, assault with intent to rape, and indecent assault and battery. Metellus and Castor previously attended Curry.

The three men appeared in Quincy District Court this morning, accompanied by supporting family and friends, including a few Curry students. The Norfolk District Attorney’s office asked for more time to review collected evidence, which includes two used condoms. All parties agreed to postpone the probable cause hearing, a pretrial process used to determine if there is enough credible evidence to advance the proceedings. If the judge rules that there is insufficient evidence, charges are dismissed.

Following today’s hearing, Castor’s attorney maintained that his client “vehemently denies that he committed any of the crimes.” Each defendant had his own attorney.

The alleged incident occurred in the early hours of Sunday, Jan. 20 after an on-campus dance. The defendants were arrested on Jan. 25, and released on $5,000 bail. They were ordered to stay away from the Curry campus and to not contact the victim.

Semexant’s public Twitter profile reads, “May ALL who gloat over my distress be put to shame and confusion.”

Screen shot 2013-04-12 at 12.29.18 PMFollowing the January arrests, the Curry administration announced it would review guest policies, security procedures and residence hall policies. All three men were on campus as guests of current students. In addition, the college had said it would review its notification procedures; the Curry administration waited six days to notify the campus community about the assault.

In response to a request by CurrierTimes.net for an update on the review, Curry Director of Communication Fran Jackson said no changes are planned for how the college manages general events.

“The college has reviewed its guest policy for events, and is not planning to make any changes to the policy for general events at this time,” she said.

However, “our review of the residence hall guest policy remains ongoing at this time.”

The current policy states that students are allowed to have a maximum of two guests at any one time, and that “students are responsible for the conduct of and adherence to policies by any guest or visitor. Inappropriate behavior and damage caused by the guest becomes the responsibility of the host student.” It is unclear if the student or students who had hosted Semexant, Metellus and Castor were disciplined in any way.

Curry did make a change to its guest policy for the upcoming student Spring Weekend, which begins April 19. In the past, students were allowed to have two guests for the weekend. That number has been cut to just one. And for the GrooveBoston Dance Party on April 20, Spring Weekend’s premier social event, students must purchase tickets in advance. Tickets are available on Tuesday, April 16 from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. (for seniors only) and on Wednesday, April 17 from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. outside the Student Center gymnasium.

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