Several students at Morehouse College, an historically black men’s university in Atlanta, posted videos to Twitter alleging sexual abuse against a staff member.
The first student posted a video on 16 July, describing DeMarcus Crews, assistant director of student services, as a ‘predatory’.
‘So I’m finally ready to tell what happened. Since second semester of my freshman year, I was assaulted by a staff member of Morehouse College by the name of Demarcus Crews,’ he said in the two-minute and twenty-second video.
Please get Morehouse’s attention. Myself and other students have suffered too long!! pic.twitter.com/KGmoquTCvW
— Everytime i come in the kitchen you in the kitchen (@GrindAlways__) July 17, 2019
The student said Crews made inappropriate comments and advances. He also said Crews tried to force him to ‘come out’ about his sexuality.
Several other students also posted on Twitter about Crews.
‘I battled with desperation, my sexuality, trust, doubt, ready to fight on sight, suicidal thoughts,’ one student wrote in reply to the first video.
They added their grades dropped, they began drinking more and they resigned from positions on campus.
‘The school isn’t built for the students,’ they continued. ‘Title IX is a whole joke. The staff wasn’t supposed to be allowed on campus but showed up to multiple events. We need justice.’
Here is another video of accusations:
— B. K A R T E R (@brysonkarter) July 17, 2019
Morehouse responds and launches investigation
When the allegations gained traction on social media, Morehouse responded and placed Crews on unpaid administrative leave. They also launched an investigation.
Morehouse College President David A. Thomas released a statement, which the school posted to Twitter.
In his statement, Thomas said the school ‘assembled our senior leadership to quickly address this matter’.
He added that Maurice Washington, the Senior Student Services Officer, reached out to the students who posted on social media providing both support and informing them of the investigation proceedings.
— The Maroon Tiger (@themaroontiger) July 17, 2019
The school also released a general, formal statement:
‘Maintaining a safe and secure campus for students, faculty, staff, and visitors is a priority at Morehouse College. We will take appropriate and immediate action against anyone involved in compromising the safety of out community. We have demonstrated that in our urgent response to these allegations. Our support goes out to anyone who feels that they are a victim of sexual misconduct.
‘Our Sexual Misconduct Policy and Procedures provide for disciplinary action including dismissal, if any student, faculty, or staff member engages in inappropriate behavior.’