ECU students react to report of drink tampering & sexual assault at Theta Chi frat house

GREENVILLE, N.C. (WITN) – East Carolina University students have more questions than answers regarding an alert sent out by the university about an alleged drink tampering of two people, one of which allegedly led to a sexual assault at the Theta Chi fraternity house.

ECU freshman Aspen Savage says the alert caught her off guard.

“I was surprised, shocked to see it,” Savage said. “I’m weirded out by it. I thought we would’ve been past this because it’s 2022, but these things happen.”

ECU freshman Vincent Deluca says he feels that when he goes out, he’s extra vigilant when he’s with women.

“I mean I feel safe, I feel like I don’t need to be worried,” Deluca said. “But when I’m out with my girlfriends I obviously look out for them if they need anything.”

A protest was held Tuesday at 9 p.m. at the Theta Chi house in response to the alleged drink tampering and sexual assault.

The same fraternity was investigated for drink tampering in October 2020 and October 2021. It was also investigated for sexual assault alongside the drink tampering investigation in the fall of 2021. Protests followed in an effort to get the fraternity removed from campus.

The Tuesday alert says that the drink tampering and sexual assault took place on Aug. 20th, 2022 and that the alleged perpetrator is known to the victim.

“Sex offenses are treated with seriousness on our campus. There are free confidential and private resources available to provide supportive measures through both the university disciplinary and criminal processes to all parties,” the alert further states.

The university reminds people to not accept drinks at social gatherings and to report any suspicious or criminal activity as soon as possible.

Theta Chi headquarters in Indiana sent WITN a statement saying, “Theta Chi Fraternity has been made aware of allegations of drink tampering and sexual assault at East Carolina University. Fraternity staff members have been in contact with ECU administrators and are investigating and gathering facts related to the allegations.”

After the fall 2021 reported drink tampering and sexual assault report, a 30-day cease and desist order was issued on Nov. 11th, 2021, restricting all chapter operations of the fraternity at the school, with the exception of official chapter meetings.

In February, the Greenville Police Department said its investigation into the sexual assault case was “considered closed as the victim decided not to proceed with a criminal investigation.”

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