Individuals who have experienced sexual misconduct have several reporting options available to them, including reporting the incident just to the University, reporting the incident just to local law enforcement, or reporting the incident to both the University and local law enforcement. Individuals can also make anonymous reports of sexual misconduct.
Option #1: Report to the University
As indicated above, with the exception of confidential resources, all faculty and staff, and students in their roles as University employees (RAs, GAs), are obligated to report to the University any information they may receive concerning sex discrimination, sexual harassment, or sexual conduct. All other individuals are encouraged to report to the University as well.
Any individual may provide a report to the University by contacting any Title IX team member:
- LaShun McGhee, Compliance and Title IX Coordinator (Senior Title IX Officer)
Office: Student Life Office Suite, 1st floor Burpee Student Center (next to Den)
Phone: 815-226-2842 / E-Mail: LMcGhee@rockford.edu
- Monique Lindstedt, Vice-President of Human Resources (Deputy Title IX Coordinator)
Office: Human Resources Office, 1st floor Nelson Hall
Phone: 815-394-4376 / E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Elaine Sharpe, Associate Professor of Psychology (Deputy Title IX Coordinator)
Office: Starr Science, 4th floor, Room 436
Phone: 815-226-4112 / E-Mail: email@example.com
Reports can be made in person, via e-mail, or by phone. Upon receipt of a report, the University will initiate its response and investigation and resolution process.
Option #2: Report to Rockford Police (Law Enforcement)
The University encourages anyone who has experienced sexual misconduct to pursue criminal action for incidents that may also be crimes under applicable criminal statutes. Law enforcement officers are trained in handling sexual assault and other cases involving sexual misconduct. An officer can be dispatched to campus to meet with the reporting party, to assist the reporting party in obtaining medical attention and emotional counseling, and to write a formal report of the incident.
Reporting to law enforcement does not require prosecution of the offense and the reporting party’s wishes will be taken into account by law enforcement. The police report and any supporting evidence may be turned over to the Winnebago County States Attorney’s Office, which decides whether there is sufficient evidence to prosecute. Information about the law enforcement process of reporting, the investigation, arrests, filing of charges, hearings, the trial and sentencing will be explained at the time of report. University employees can assist the reporting party in contacting local law enforcement.
Option #3: Report to BOTH University and Rockford Police Department
Individuals can report incidents of sexual misconduct to both the University and the Rockford Police Department.
The University will comply with law enforcement request for cooperation and such cooperation may require the University to temporarily suspend the fact-finding aspect of a Title IX investigation while the law enforcement agency is in the process of gathering evidence. During this time, the University will continue to offer support to the reporting party, including discussing Title IX rights, procedural options, and needed interim measures to ensure safety and well-being. The University will promptly resume its Title IX investigation as soon as notified by the law enforcement agency that it has completed the evidence gathering process, but will not generally wait for the conclusion of any criminal proceedings.
The University’s policy, definitions, and standard of proof differ from Illinois criminal law. Neither law enforcement’s determination whether to prosecute a responding party nor the outcome of any criminal prosecution is determinative of whether sexual misconduct has occurred under this University policy. Proceedings under this policy may be carried out prior to, simultaneously with or following civil or criminal proceedings off campus.
Option #4: Anonymous Reporting
Any individual may make an anonymous report concerning an allegation of sexual harassment, sexual violence, sexual assault, intimate partner violence, domestic violence, dating violence, or stalking. An individual may report the incident without disclosing his/her name, identifying the responding party, or requesting any action. Depending on the level of information available about the incident or the individuals involved, anonymous reporting may impact the University’s ability to respond or pursue appropriate action. Making an initial anonymous report does not prevent an individual from choosing to follow-up with additional information or through a different reporting option.
- Anonymous reports may be made by telephone at 855-372-0663 or submit an online anonymous report
- EthicsPoint is a service that allows anyone to report suspected misconduct or other issues with complete anonymity or confidentiality. This service allows the person making the report and University administrators to confer about additional details, while the reporting party’s identity remains anonymous and unknown to the University. All reports will go to the Title IX Coordinator for review.
EthicsPoint utilizes its own secure servers, outside of the University network, as well as their own call center. While the reports will be forwarded to University administrators for appropriate review and action, the source of all reports submitted to EthicsPoint will remain confidential and will not be shared with University administrators without your permission.
Third-parties are encouraged to report incidents of sexual misconduct. Third-parties may report incidents to any responsible employee or through the anonymous reporting resource (EthicsPoint). After providing a report, third parties are not entitled to information about the University’s investigation and response due to privacy concerns and applicable federal and state laws.
Retaliation After Reporting An Incident
Prohibition of Retaliation
The University prohibits retaliation against any individual who makes a good faith report of a potential violation of this policy, who supports another person’s report, or who acts as a witness in any investigation into an allegation/complaint. Retaliation includes, but is not limited to: any form of intimidation, reprisal or harassment. The University will take appropriate action against those who retaliate, up to an including termination if they are an employee, or dismissal if they are a student, or sanctions if they are a guest or visitor. Retaliation by any party, witness, reporter or respondent will not be tolerated.