Published On: Mon, Apr 6th, 2015

Thanks for the Apologies, Now Phi Kappa Psi Fraternity Will Sue Rolling Stone over Rape Story

University of Virginia Phi Kappa Psi

Now that the media have given full publicity to the mea culpa of Rolling Stone contributor Sabrina Rubin Erdely and her boss, publisher Jann S. Wenner, for the made up story about rape at a University of Virginia fraternity, said fraternity is planning to go after them like gangbusters and “pursue all available legal action against the magazine.”

Stephen Scipione, president of the Virginia Alpha Chapter of Phi Kappa Psi, said in a statement Monday that they’re moving forward with a lawsuit.

Late last month, the fraternity issued this statement:

Over the past two weeks the Virginia Alpha Chapter of Phi Kappa Psi has been working tirelessly and openly with the Charlottesville Police Department as they investigate the allegations detailed in the November 19, 2014 Rolling Stone article. We continue to be shocked by the allegations and saddened by this story. We have no knowledge of these alleged acts being committed at our house or by our members. Anyone who commits any form of sexual assault, wherever or whenever, should be identified and brought to justice.

In tandem with the Charlottesville Police Department’s investigation, the Chapter’s undergraduate members have made efforts to contribute with internal fact-finding. Our initial doubts as to the accuracy of the article have only been strengthened as alumni and undergraduate members have delved deeper.

Given the ongoing nature of the criminal investigation, which we fully support, we do not feel it would be appropriate at this time to provide more than the following:

First, the 2012 roster of employees at the Aquatic and Fitness Center does not list a Phi Kappa Psi as a lifeguard. As far as we have determined, no member of our fraternity worked there in any capacity during this time period.

Second, the Chapter did not have a date function or a social event during the weekend of September 28th, 2012.

Third, our Chapter’s pledging and initiation periods, as required by the University and Inter-Fraternity Council, take place solely in the spring semester and not in the fall semester. We document the initiation of new members at the end of each spring. Moreover, no ritualized sexual assault is part of our pledging or initiation process. This notion is vile, and we vehemently refute this claim.

It is our hope that this information will encourage people who may know anything relevant to this case to contact the Charlottesville Police Department as soon as possible. In the meantime, we will continue to assist investigators in whatever way we can.

Respectfully,

Phi Kappa Psi, Virginia Alpha Chapter

“These false accusations have been extremely damaging to our entire organization, but we can only begin to imagine the setback this must have dealt to survivors of sexual assault, ” Scipione told ABC News. “We hope that Rolling Stone’s actions do not discourage any survivors from coming forward to seek the justice they deserve.”

And by justice, he obviously meant the kind you can take to the bank.

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