Purdue student arrested after report of sexual assault on campus

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WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (Jan. 23, 2015)-- Purdue police were notified by another university’s law enforcement agency Thursday that one of its students reported having been sexually assaulted by a Purdue student.

After executing a search warrant, James Rendon, 20, was taken into custody for questioning and was later arrested on charges of possession of marijuana/paraphernalia and rape.

"A lot of it’s still under investigation," Purdue Police Chief John Cox said.

Cox told CBS 4 that the victim was from Iowa and in town the weekend of January 17-18 when the alleged incident happened. She reported the rape after returning home.

"It was the victim coming forward to that university law enforcement agency who in turn contacted our department," Cox said.

Police were tight-lipped about the circumstances surrounding the reported rape, saying only that it happened at Acacia Fraternity in the middle of Purdue's campus, where Rendon lived.

Purdue University suspended Rendon and will not allow him on campus. It also suspended Acacia Fraternity from all events, activities and benefits and/or services.

Acacia Fraternity's national organization sent CBS 4 the following statement late Friday:

"On Thursday, January 22, Acacia International Fraternity Headquarters staff was notified by the Purdue Chapter president of an alleged sexual assault that took place at the Purdue chapter house the prior evening. The chapter has been suspended by the University pending further investigation while the member in question has been arrested on rape charges, suspended by the university, and he has been suspended by the chapter. The chapter has and continues to fully cooperate with the investigation.
Acacia International Fraternity and the Purdue Chapter condemn sexual assault in the strongest possible terms and are treating this investigation seriously. The alleged actions of this individual do not reflect a problem with this chapter, however the entire chapter now bears responsibility for taking corrective actions and standing as a voice against sexual assault in the community. Acacia Fraternity supports the actions of Purdue University and looks forward to the outcome of the investigation.
We have no additional comments pending further investigation."

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