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sexual assault

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As sexual misconduct allegations against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh dominate the news, sexual assault prevention centers in Kansas City have seen an increase in calls from survivors reaching out for support.

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After Christine Blasey Ford said Judge Brett Kavanaugh assaulted her in high school, President Trump tweeted that had it really happened, her parents would have reported it. This has sparked a social media movement of people sharing their stories with the hashtag #WhyIDidntReport.

Seg. 1: #WhyIDidntReport. Seg 2: Life With Food Allergies

Sep 27, 2018

Segment 1: Why do people not report their experiences of sexual assault?

After Christine Blasey Ford said Judge Brett Kavanaugh assaulted her in high school, President Trump tweeted that had it really happened, her parents would have reported it. This has sparked a social media movement of people sharing their stories with the hashtag #WhyIDidntReport. We took calls from our community, and talked with a therapist and local advocate.

Crysta Henthorne / Kansas News Service

Who built it?

Steve Watkins emerged on the Kansas political scene this year as a relative unknown, but with a resume that political consultants could work with. West Point. Army Ranger. Combat patrols on the Afghanistan-Pakistan border. Mountain climber. Degrees from MIT and Harvard. Started his own business and grew it to nearly 500 employees.

Andrea Tudhope / KCUR 89.3

Since Christine Blasey Ford went public with her allegations that Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her in high school in the 1980s, survivors in the Kansas City area joined thousands across the U.S. on social media by recounting their own experiences under the hashtag #whyididntreport

Countless others remained quiet, while a few survivors agreed to speak with KCUR about why they never filed charges. These are their stories.

Keith O'Brien, white male in shirt and tie wearing headphones and seated in front of a microphone in the KCUR studio.
Luke X. Martin / KCUR 89.3

Segment 1: Second accusation of sexual misconduct against Supreme Court nominee increases some people's doubts about confirmation.

Kansas City Police Department

Reporting a sexual assault to police is unquestionably traumatic. Victims undergo an invasive medical exam. Police ask sensitive questions. Then, when victims get home, sometimes they have no sheets.

That's because police take clothing and fabric from the scene of the crime for DNA analysis. And while a victim is likely to have multiple items of clothing, he or she may not have an extra set of bed sheets.

Crysta Henthorne / Kansas News Service

A more fair court system

The killing of Michael Brown by a police officer in Ferguson, Missouri, in 2014 triggered weeks of  sometimes-violent protests. It became yet another polarizing incident over force used by law enforcement on young black men. (This week the country is watching a similar case play out in the dashcam-captured fatal shooting of Laquan McDonald. A cop charged in that case is on trial now.)

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In the wake of rape charge filed in an attack on a 13-year-old girl in the office of a foster care contractor, Kansas lawmakers said Tuesday they’ll investigate what went wrong.

One legislator said state officials and the contractor responsible for watching over the alleged victim will face tough questions later this month.

Laura Ziegler / KCUR 89.3

Segment 1: Local reactions to Pennsylvania grand jury report on seven decades of sexual abuse of children by clergy.

Andrea Tudhope / KCUR 89.3

A Kansas City attorney and abuse victims are calling on the attorneys general of Kansas and Missouri to launch investigations into clergy sexual abuse, similar to the grand jury investigation in Pennsylvania.

Attorney Rebecca Randles said she has hundreds of clients who allege they’ve been abused by a member of the Catholic Church.

Luke X. Martin / KCUR 89.3

Segment 1: Tenants suffering domestic violence will be able to break their rental agreements without penalty.

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The University of Kansas last year reached a $200,000 settlement with a former student who alleged he was sexually assaulted by a theater professor. 

The details of the settlement came to light after The Lawrence Journal-World made an open-records request from KU. Records released by the university show the student agreed to drop a federal lawsuit as part of the settlement. 

Sam Zeff / KCUR 89.3

Kansas City police say a federal law spurred a rape investigation in late May at the Jackson County jail after two detainees were seen alone together.

It came up during a Kansas City council committee meeting Wednesday that the Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) sparked the investigation.

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Missouri has at least 4,889 untested rape kits that have yet to be submitted for DNA testing, according to a state audit. 

In 2017, crime labs around the state tested 869 rape kits, which preserve DNA evidence, the audit said. And the Kansas City Police Department had the longest turnaround among more than 250 law enforcement departments.

Johnson County Sheriff's Office

An Independence man pleaded guilty today in Johnson County District Court to raping a 22-year-old sheriff's deputy in Olathe, Kansas.

Brady Newman-Caddell, 22, admitted to two counts of rape, aggravated kidnapping and aggravated criminal sodomy.

In October 2016, Newman-Caddell and 25-year-old William Luth of Blue Springs, Missouri, forced the Johnson County deputy into a car, covered her face and drove off before taking turns sexually assaulting her. 

Chris Moreland / Missouri House Communications

Segment 1: Kansas and Missouri "silence breakers" speak up about their own sexual harassment and assult. 

In the wake of the #MeToo Movement, awareness of sexual misconduct in state government has increased steadily. Today, two women recalled their experiences of sexual harrassment while working in the Missouri and Kansas statehouses. They say speaking out about the misconduct will help other women avoid similar harrassment. 

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A black middle school student, who reported a sexual and physical assault, is at the center of a federal lawsuit claiming Lansing Middle School officials failed to deal with the issue properly because of his race. 

The lawsuit, filed Friday in U.S. District Court in Kansas City, Kansas, stems from a February 6 incident when the Lansing Middle School student was allegedly verbally and physically attacked by another student — who, the lawsuit points out, is white.

Independence Police Department

A former crime analyst with the Independence, Missouri, Police Department is suing Chief Brad Halsey and the city for sexual harassment and assault.

The lawsuit, filed Wednesday in Jackson County Circuit Court, alleges six years of unwanted, "sexually charged" incidents carried out against her by multiple co-workers beginning in 2007.

The accuser is named in the lawsuit, but she has requested KCUR not use her name. It is KCUR's policy not to identify victims in cases of sexual harassment or violence.

Andrea Tudhope / KCUR 89.3

Steven Rios, a Kansas City, Kansas, police officer, has been charged with one count of sexual battery for touching a woman without her consent while on duty. 

The woman, a civilian employee of the Kansas City, Kansas, Police Department, reported the incident March 9.

Airman First Class Jovan Banks / U.S. Air Force

An explicit report was released yesterday by a Missouri House committee with testimony from the woman who was involved in an extramarital affair with Governor Eric Greitens. The report details alleged sexual abuse perpetrated by Greitens during their relationship. In its wake, more state lawmakers on both sides of the aisle are calling for his resignation.

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Segment 1: Accusations and investigations result in new rounds of discipline at both universities.

After allegations of hazing and sexual assault, 24 of the 28 fraternities at the University of Kansas and all 29 at the University of Missouri - Columbia have temporarily suspended a number of activities. Today, we asked what led to these decisions and whether it is indicative of a attitude change in fraternity culture nationwide.

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A bill in the Kansas House would require children convicted of sexually violent crimes to register as sex offenders for life. That’s the same penalty adults face.

Under current law, juvenile offenders over 14 can be required to register as a sex offender for serious crimes. However, in many cases juvenile offenders are not required to register for the public offender list.

The bill was prompted by a double murder in Newton. The victims were 24-year-old Alyssa Runyon and her 4-year-old daughter.

Segment 1: #MeToo fallout has more parents worried about protecting their kids from sexual predators.

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Sheri "Purpose" Hall is a spoken word poet, an author, an ordained minister and an activist. She's represented Kansas City in national poetry slams and recently, a video of her performing one of her poems, "Irregular Rape Poem," has gone viral. Hear her story.

Guest:

A new play, Trench Warfare, is about two infantry soldiers in World War I. We talk with the local musician who composed the score for the play; he shares how he evoked the feelings of WWI with a seven-piece orchestra and a computer.

Then: Sexual misconduct has been an issue in the Kansas and Missouri statehouses. Two women in politics from both sides of the state line compare notes from their experiences on the job.

Guests:

Teenagers And The #MeToo Movement

Jan 8, 2018
Luke X. Martin / KCUR 89.3

From newsrooms to the U.S. Capitol to the stage at the Golden Globes, people are drawing back the curtain on an issue that has plagued our workplaces, homes and schools for years. Today, psychologist Wes Crenshaw returns with a panel of young women to talk about this very issue: sexual assault and harassment. They give us their take on what's going on in the #MeToo movement right now, and let us know why this issue is still especially relevant for people their age.

Andrea Tudhope / KCUR 89.3

It seems like news is constantly breaking about men accused of sexual misconduct, harassment or assault. There's a feeling of change in the air, but there is also confusion.

We explore how Kansas Citians are responding. We hear what women want in the workplace, and we talk to men who are rethinking their behavior and perspectives. Plus: your thoughts and questions.

Guests:

David Shankbone / Ryan J. Reilly / Max Goldberg / Flickr - CC

Are threats of coal the best way to get children to behave? Today, the Ethics Professors take a look at what Santa's naughty-and-nice list may be teaching our kids. Then, a conversation about the ongoing surge of sexual misconduct allegations. Brenda Bethman, director of the UMKC Women's Center, joins the ethics team to take a deeper dive into how to handle the the assault and harassment revelations that continue to surface.

We are hearing more stories of sexual harassment and sexual misconduct. But these stories aren't new. How much has changed over time? Three women from three different generations share their perspectives from one industry.

Guests:

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