The Montgomery County Prosecutor refused charges against suspended senior and former men’s basketball center Matt Kavanaugh in two cases of alleged sexual assault reported to have occurred over move-in weekend in August.
Kavanaugh was accused of, but was not criminally charged in, twice sexually assaulting a 17-year-old female freshman at two different residences in the campus area in less than an hour and 45 minutes on the morning of Aug. 20, according to University of Dayton Department of Public Safety records obtained by Flyer News from the Montgomery County Prosecutor’s Office.
The university has not publicly identified the specific standards of behavior and code of conduct violations leading to Kavanaugh’s suspension on Wednesday, Oct. 24.
In a written statement, parents John and Susan Kavanaugh said they “are deeply disappointed by the University of Dayton’s decision to suspend Matthew for the remainder of this academic year and strongly maintain that he did not violate the University’s Standards of Behavior and Code of Conduct.”
Kavanaugh’s suspension also elicited a response from Montgomery County prosecutor Mat Heck Jr., who released a written statement Friday, Oct. 26, stating, “I want to applaud the administration of the University of Dayton for taking these allegations seriously and taking appropriate action.”
“Obviously student disciplinary action is separate and distinct from any potential criminal charges,” Heck said. “Improper behavior by students is not always criminal in nature, and in this instant [sic] the evidence did not support a criminal charge.”
On Aug. 20 at 2:13 a.m., two UD police officers were “dispatched to the area of the Caldwell Street Apartments on the report of a possible sexual assault in progress,” according to the Public Safety incident report released by the Prosecutor’s Office.
Then, during the Public Safety investigation on Aug. 20, the female student reported that she was also sexually assaulted while in the basement of a landlord house on the 400 block of Kiefaber Street. Over the course of the investigation, Public Safety determined the time of the reported Kiefaber incident to be around 12:30 a.m.
On Sept. 25, the Montgomery County Prosecutor’s office announced there was not enough evidence for felony charges.
“In this particular case, they looked at everything and determined there was insufficient evidence to support that there was a felony that had been committed,” said Greg Flannagan, a spokesman for the prosecutor’s office.
Since Wednesday’s announcement, all attempts by Flyer News to meet with administrators regarding the case have been denied and directed to Teri Rizvi, associate vice president for university communications.
On Sept. 25, the day the prosecutor refused charges, Randy Groesbeck, a university police major and director of security and administration for Public Safety, told Flyer News the situation was “being reviewed within the university,” and said Public Safety would work with Community Standards and Civility to provide them with available information.
In August, Christine Schramm, dean of students, told Flyer News the university’s disciplinary process could happen simultaneously alongside the criminal investigation, and said the two processes could have very different results.
“The civil case is really based on evidence,” Schramm said. “The university’s code, with anything, is the preponderance of evidence.”
Preponderance of the evidence is a standard for deciding cases by which the University Hearing Board determines “what more likely than not occurred,” according to the university student handbook.
Kavanaugh, a Centerville, Ohio, native, is not allowed on campus for any reason while suspended, according to the university student handbook. He is eligible to re-enroll at the university when his suspension is over in May.