Dakota Vaughn & Maddie Conley
Student Director & Online Editor

UPDATE-10/16/18 2:40 PM—An Upper Allen Police spokesman has confirmed the victim of the reported sexual assault is not a Messiah student. The crime was not committed on Messiah’s campus or in Upper Allen Township. The municipality that has jurisdiction over the case will continue investigations.


Previously: At 5:24 p.m. this evening, both a mass email and a campus-wide text alert were sent to all Messiah students regarding a sexual assault. The assault was reported to have happened on campus and was officially reported to the Upper Allen Township Police Department.

The assault took place last week between two individuals who agreed to meet one another prior to the incident.

The official statement on the Upper Allen Police’s website says, “The Upper Allen Township Police Department received a report of a sexual assault that took place on the Messiah College Campus. Police are actively investigating the incident.”

Executive Director of Marketing and Communications at Messiah, Carla Gross, said, “because this is an active Upper Allen Police investigation, they have not provided any additional information for us to release beyond what was already in our safety notice to campus.”

Messiah’s Department of Safety is working with local authorities in this active investigation. “The College is working closely with local law enforcement and will continue to provide all information needed to keep the campus community safe,” Gross said.

The mass email regarding the assault report reminded students to be careful when interacting with strangers or new acquaintances online and warned students to exercise caution when making plans to meet individuals they may not know well.

“It was important for the College to send the notice that it did this afternoon, first for the protection and safety of our campus—and also to comply with the Clery Act, which requires colleges and universities to make its campus community members aware of potential threats to their safety,” Gross said.

If you have information that you think may be related to this case, please contact the Upper Allen Police Department at 717-795-2445.

Updates will be posted as they are gathered.