Need Breaking Updates?
Subscribe Now and Receive Breaking Stories directly to your email inbox daily
Thank you for subscribing.
Something went wrong.
A pre-med student at Northwestern University sexually assaulted an incapacitated female student after meeting her earlier that night at a soccer party, according to a report.
Scott Thomas — a 20-year-old freshman from Bernardsville, New Jersey — has been charged with criminal sexual assault in the alleged attack, which took place at about 2 a.m. Saturday, the Chicago Tribune reports.
Prosecutors said Thomas has been expelled from the school following his arrest, but university spokesman Bob Rowley declined to confirm whether Thomas had been attending school there, citing student privacy laws.
Prosecutors said during a hearing Wednesday in Cook County that students leaving a university library saw Thomas sexually assaulting an 18-year-old female student as he held her against a glass door. The woman “appeared lifeless” and not a willing participant in the encounter since she “could not stand on her own,” witnesses said.
Prosecutors said one of the students then started approaching Thomas and the woman after recognizing what was happening, leading Thomas to pull up his pants and tuck in his shirt. The victim, meanwhile, was mumbling incoherently and a witness heard her pleading with Thomas to stop, prosecutors said.
The woman was then unable to give relevant information to a responding Northwestern police officer who was flagged down by the students.
Surveillance video shows the woman removing Thomas’ hand from her body several times as they walked on campus prior to the alleged assault. Thomas was also captured on the footage holding the woman upright and pushing her against a glass door, prosecutors said.
The woman told authorities that she met Thomas earlier that night and didn’t know him well. She suffered bruising, redness and scratches on her upper lip, arms and wrist. A rape kit was also administered at the hospital, the Tribune reports.
Thomas, who could not be reached for comment, is not allowed to return to campus, prosecutors said. Cook County Circuit Judge Anjana Hansen also rejected his attorney’s request for him to return to New Jersey to live with his parents, who attended Wednesday’s hearing.
Thomas’ attorney, Jeff Urdangen, who also serves as the director of Northwestern’s Center for Criminal Defense, declined comment when reached Thursday by The Post, saying he would not speak publicly on the case “now or in the future.”
While in court Wednesday, Urdangen dismissed the allegations as an unfortunate circumstance of “drunken sex,” according to the Tribune.
“This is an unfortunate situation,” Urdangen said. “Things will get sorted out as they go along.”
University officials, meanwhile, acknowledged that Northwestern police responded to a report of a sexual assault on the Evanston campus at about 2 a.m. Saturday.
“The suspect was immediately identified and is currently in police custody,” the statement read. “Criminal sexual assault charges against the suspect were authorized by the Cook County State’s Attorney’s office [March 19]. The University’s Office of Equity and NPD have been providing support to those impacted.”
Thomas was released from custody Wednesday after posting the cash portion of his $50,000 bond. A booking photo was not taken because he “immediately posted bond,” according to the Tribune.
Messages seeking additional comment from Northwestern police, including an incident report, were not returned.