UVA Fraternity Sues Rolling Stones Magazine

UVA Fraternity Sues Rolling Stones Magazine

Rolling Stone Magazine’s article “A Rape on Campus” regarding the alleged gang rape of a University of Virginia student has been retracted as of Monday, April 6. However, the fraternity house accused of partaking in the incident, Phi Kappa Psi, decided just a day after the article was retracted to proceed in filing a lawsuit due to the magazine’s discredited reporting.

“A Rape on Campus” published on November 19, 2014, revealed an in depth report of the alleged callous sexual assault that took place back in 2012. The Charlottesville police conducted an investigation in March in response to the accusations in the article and ultimately found no evidence to back the sexual assault allegations described in the article.

UVA President Teresa Sullivan released a response to the original article to express her disapproval of the article’s faults. Sullivan indicated the article would only increase rape victims reluctance to report their incidents due to the kind of false depictions being trivialized in such sensationalized writing.

Virginia state Governor Terry McAuliffe publicly commented on the article as being ‘shameful’ and, like Sullivan, believes has only hurt the battle to combat sexual violence on college campus’.

Managing editor Dana has announced the magazine plans to adjust and revise the editorial standards and policies of the company. In addition, Rolling Stone’s spokeswoman Kathryn Brenner has said the magazine has no comment in regards to the lawsuit.

The story’s author Sabrina Rubin Erdely and the managing editor Will Dana, both apologized for the article’s faulty account, but the fraternity expresses they did not receive any direct apology from Erdely.

Rolling Stone released “A Rape on Campus: What Went Wrong” by Sheila Coronel, Steve Coll, and Derek Kravitz on April 5. The article includes a Note from the Editor and a public apology from Dana. Additionally, the article addresses how the magazine got their information and acknowledges the errors surrounding it.