Won't expel sex offender

Won't expel sex offender

Provost Dru Marshall says 21-year-old Connor Neurauter has been advised not to return to school this term and the university will continue to review the situation.

The University of Calgary says a student who has been convicted of sexual interference would be escorted away if he tried to go on campus.

The administration made the comment Thursday in the face of a petition signed by a growing number of people that calls for the expulsion of Connor Neurauter.

"The matter in British Columbia occurred before Mr. Neurauter was a student at the University of Calgary", Marshall said in a statement.

More than 33,000 people have signed a petition urging the University of Calgary to expel Neurauter on the grounds that his conduct violates the university's sexual violence policy.

Earlier this month, Neurauter was sentenced to 90 days in jail, two years probation and is to be registered as a sex offender.

The B.C. prosecution service says he served the first day of his sentence January 4, but the judge permitted him to serve the remainder starting May 4, after finishing his semester at the University of Calgary.

Giving evidence, the girl said at one point Neurauter choked her before handing over a bra as a gift.

Representatives from the University of Calgary are working with Neurauter to determine how he'll be able to complete his courses to finish his current semester.

Neurauter's sentence sparked anger among many, including the unnamed victim's mother.

"I think if you commit a crime, you should be held accountable for that", she said.

While students said the dilemma draws into question the school's commitment to protecting victims of gender-based violence, Marshall said the decision doesn't change the University of Calgary's commitment to providing a safe environment for both faculty and students.

While those behind the posting asked the school to expel him for violating its sexual violence policy, the provost said the policy does not apply in this case.

"It discourages victims from coming forward as perpetrators are accommodated and their actions are excused for the sake of not impeding their 'potential'". I was hoping for more.

Haley Scott, of Calgary Communities Against Sexual Abuse, says making allowances for a sex offender to finish his studies sends the wrong message to victims.

The victim's mother wanted Neurauter expelled from the college.

Neurauter's parents, Chris and Susan Neurauter, issued a statement to CBC News expressing support for their son and concern over how the media have covered the story.

"He didn't rape anyone", she said.

"He's very upset. He's trying to deal with it and work through it. And if there is, then there's a pretty high responsibility on the school to do something that would minimize that risk for everyone", he said.

"He's very remorseful ... he's learned his lesson", Neurauter added. His father said that his son was treated fairly. Both have read threats made against him online, and she said university staff member told her students are waiting in classes in which he's enrolled to see if he shows up.

Montgomery said she was angry, but not surprised, at what she believes is a lenient sentence.

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