Stillwater, OK – Nathan Cochran, a 22-year-old fraternity leader at Oklahoma State University, has been accused of sexually assaulting at least 11 male students while they were sleeping.
University officials were first made aware of possible sex assaults in November 2011, when the president of the FarmHouse fraternity asked about reporting sexual assaults. Afterwards five male students had come forward to report Nathan Cochran, a fellow member of the FarmHouse fraternity and the secretary of Oklahoma State’s Interfraternity Council, had sexually assaulted them.
One student said he was sleeping when he was awakened by Cochran fondling him. The student says he pretended he was sleeping in hopes Cochran would stop, but that it didn’t work out too well. The student said that Cochran rubbed his genitals on his face and tried forcing him to suck his dick before Cochran gave him a blowjob. Deep sleeper, that kid.
A second student stated he awoke in his dorm room to find Cochran fondling him. He didn’t get Cochran’s lunchmeat spread all over his face because instead of faking sleep, he got up and went to the bathroom. He said that Cochran sent him a series of texts begging him “not to ruin his life” by reporting the incident, claiming he wasn’t gay, just “blackout drunk.”
But the school never contacted police about these allegations because they say the victims did not want police involved and that the federal Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) prevented them from contacting police and giving them names of the victims and their alleged attacker. So they simply banned Cochran from the school for three years, but let him finish out his semester.
I did a little looking into this federal law and found there were a ton of regulations regarding a student’s records and who they can be released to, but absolutely nothing about a school notifying a police about a possible crime having been committed. In fact, there are clear exceptions for any time public safety is at risk. In particular:
§ 99.36 What conditions apply to disclosure of information in health and safety emergencies?
(a) An educational agency or institution may disclose personally identifiable information from an education record to appropriate parties, including parents of an eligible student, in connection with an emergency if knowledge of the information is necessary to protect the health or safety of the student or other individuals.
I am with Dickerson on this one. A fraternity leader regularly sucking on the flaccid dick’s of passed out students does seem like a safety risk to me. And that’s just one of a few exceptions in the law that could apply to the allegations students made to school officials regarding Cochran.
The only reason why police got involved at all is because a reporter for the school newspaper repeatedly called police Captain Randy Dickerson for a comment regarding the allegations against Cochran. Since he had no idea what the reporter was talking about, Dickerson spoke with sources on campus on Dec 6, then launched a criminal investigation the very next day.
Since then, even more students at the Farm House fraternity have came forward to report being sexual assaulted by Cochran. So far, police have 11 victims and have info on a few more who are too ashamed to step forward.
Cochran was arrested on Wednesday and charged with three counts of sexually battery. He has pleaded not guilty to the charges when in court yesterday. As for the university, they have gone into damage control mode with President Burns Hargis ordering a task force to review the university’s handling of the situation.
He stated the following in a news release:
“The seriousness of this matter warrants a focused and full investigation into how it was handled by the University,” Hargis said. ”We cannot leave any doubt that we are indeed properly and appropriately handling sexual misconduct allegations, and we must determine if we need to amend our policies and procedures to more effectively and efficiently handle these types of matters in the future.”Tags: Crime, FarmHouse, fraternity, Nathan Cochran, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State University, Sexual Assault, student