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Sexual assault case on its way to court

The Castleton student charged last month with sexually assaulting a student at an off-campus party in November is due back in court on March 1 for a “status conference,” Rutland District Court officials said Friday.But while the case winds its way through the legal process, the college is allowing life for the student, Kevin Magee, to go on as usual, said Dean of Students Dennis Proulx.

Magee, of Otego, N.Y., has continued to go to class, classmates say. He does have to abide by a court ordered curfew, however, according to Castleton police.

He was charged after another student claimed he sexually assaulted her at a party at his home after she drank four beers and went to sleep.

As far as the separate alleged off-campus sexual assault reported to Public Safety on Jan. 24, Proulx said “it has left the hands of Public Safety and is still being investigated.”

But Proulx tried to ease students’ minds stressing that if the campus was at risk the alert system would be activated.

“We would let the college know if there was a sexual predator,” said Proulx.

Proulx said in this case, the college knows both the victim and accused.

“We were criticized in the 2007 alleged assaults because they were committed by a stranger,” he said. But he said that was before the Send-Word-Now alert system, parking lot cameras, and added officers to the Public Safety force. Although cameras have been added in lots, not all lots have them, But Proulx said he’d like to see more added.

But while talking about cameras, he questioned how far that might go in the name of safety.

“As we add more do we want to go beyond the parking lots?” he said.

While he said he believes camera surveillance can be beneficial to campus safety, he said he doesn’t like the thought of cameras everywhere.

“It’s not somewhere I’d like to live,” he said.