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University of Virginia by PBS NewsHour

Rolling Stone: ‘Our trust in her was misplaced’ over woman’s account of alleged UVa gang rape

Rolling Stone magazine published a note to readers this afternoon saying they no longer have confidence in the account given by the woman featured in the piece of a rape that allegedly took place at a University of Virginia fraternity in September 2012.

Rolling Stone contributing editor Sabrina Rubin Erdely came under criticism after appearing on a Slate podcast where she seemed to avoid answering questions about whether she had attempted to contact the men suspected of gang raping a woman named Jackie described in the opening paragraphs of her November article.

In his note to readers, Rolling Stone Managing Editor Will Dana wrote:

“In the face of new information, there now appear to be discrepancies in Jackie’s account, and we have come to the conclusion that our trust in her was misplaced. We were trying to be sensitive to the unfair shame and humiliation many women feel after a sexual assault and now regret the decision to not contact the alleged assaulters to get their account.”

Erdely appeared on the PBS NewsHour to discuss her article last month. The PBS NewsHour has requested an interview with Erdely and Rolling Stone and will update this post with any response received.

The fraternity Phi Kappa Psi, where Jackie’s rape allegedly took place, posted a statement on Twitter this afternoon rebutting her account of that night. In the statement they assert a party was not held at their fraternity house the weekend Jackie said she was raped and that no member of the fraternity worked at the university’s aquatic center with Jackie, which is how she said she met her accused attacker.

In an article about the fraternity’s refutation, the Washington Post reports Jackie stands by her original account of the rape. In interviews with the paper some of her close friends and supporters said they feel they have been mislead in light of the discrepancies in Jackie’s story.

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