Statement From The Heights Editorial Board Regarding LTE by John King

We would like to state our regret for reporting failures in our article, “BCPD Does Not Report Student’s Alleged Sexual Assault in September.” As Chief of Police John King noted in his Letter to the Editor, he directed all further comment to the Middlesex County District Attorney’s Office. We did not follow up with Middlesex DA, which was in charge of handling the case. In this instance, for a story with this much importance to have every fact correct, more careful reporting should have gone into it. These types of oversights are unacceptable.

The inaccuracies in the article slanted our editorial to assume the intentions of the Boston College Police Department. Statements such as BCPD “deciding not to report the crime” are not consistent claims based on the information we had at the time, and certainly not the information we have now, and it was an inappropriate overstep to assume that this was for PR purposes. Again, this is an oversight that will not reoccur. Additionally, the article states that the crime log was not updated. It is impossible to make this assertion, since this question was not even asked of King. There is also a difference between the public blotter and the crime log, the latter of which is private and is required to be updated. We confused this and incorrectly based this claim on the public blotter.

The Heights is continuing its investigation into further errors in the article and editorial. We apologize to all those affected, especially BCPD and the victim, and hope to continue an important dialogue with BCPD moving forward. Both of us share the same goal: keeping our community as safe and informed as possible.

May 16, 2017