Columbia Univ. will release review of discredited Rolling Stone rape story on Sunday
The Columbia University School of Journalism will release on Sunday its review of a now-discredited Rolling Stone story about an alleged University of Virginia fraternity gang rape, the journalism school said on Thursday.
The review of the magazine’s November story will be released at 8 p.m. (0000 GMT) on Sunday, followed by a news conference at 12 p.m. (1600 GMT) on Monday, the school said on its Twitter feed.
The review will be released both on Rolling Stone‘s website, RollingStone.com, and the website of the Columbia Journalism Review, cjr.org.
Rolling Stone commissioned the review, headed by Pulitzer Prize-winning author Steve Coll, who is dean of the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, after backtracking from its story, “A Rape on Campus,” in December.
The 9,000-word article in Rolling Stone, best known for its pop music coverage, described the Sept. 28, 2012, gang rape of a University of Virginia freshman, identified by her real first name, Jackie, during a Phi Kappa Psi fraternity pledge party. It also told how the school allegedly mishandled the incident.
The story, by writer Sabrina Rubin Erdely, caused an uproar at the Charlottesville school, the flagship of the Virginia state university system, and renewed concern about campus sexual assault.
The university shut down fraternity and sorority activities for the rest of the semester and enacted more safety measures. The article led to demonstrations on campus, and Democratic Governor Terry McAuliffe urged a review of policies at the school.
But media critics pointed out holes in the story, and Phi Kappa Psi rebutted key parts of it. Rolling Stone apologized for the article in December and cited “discrepancies” in Jackie’s account.
Charlottesville police said last month they had found no evidence to back up the story and cited numerous inconsistencies.
The inconsistencies included no proof that a party had taken place at Phi Kappa Psi on the night cited and investigators inability to find Jackie’s alleged date at the party. She declined to give a statement to police or answer questions.
(Reporting by Ian Simpson in Washington; Editing by Leslie Adler)