'No grounds' to expel student sex offender: University of Calgary


University Provost Dru Marshall says the situation is complicated and hard, but the crime took place before Neurauter was enrolled as a student.

Kaitlyn Casswell started a petition to have Connor Neurauter expelled from the University of Calgary. "We have no grounds on which to expel him", Marshall said in a statement. "We know that victims of sexual violence may have been triggered by this incident and we're also anxious about [Neurauter's] safety", said Marshall.

"By allowing him to go on with his life normally, finishing up his semester at university, it sends the wrong message to victims of sexual violence", Casswell said.

Connor Neurauter, 21, a junior hockey player at the University of Calgary, pleaded guilty in 2017 to sexual interference of a young girl when he was 18 years old.

A charge of possessing child pornography was stayed at the hearing.

The sentencing judge delayed the beginning of the jail term until May to allow Neurauter to finish his university term.

The B.C. prosecution service says he served the first day of his sentence January 4, but the judge permitted him to serve the remainder starting May 4, after finishing his semester at the University of Calgary.

By Thursday afternoon, more than 46,000 people had signed the petition urging the university to expel Neurauter.

The university says Neurauter hasn't been suspended, but his status is under review.

Both have read threats made against him online, and she said university staff member told her students are waiting in classes in which he's enrolled to see if he shows up.

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"There were a number of safety concerns that we took into account in our decision", she said Friday."We know that victims of sexual violence ... may have been triggered by this incident and we were also anxious about his safety, given some of the commentary on social media".

The victim's mother, who can not be identified to protect her daughter's identity, told CBC News on Wednesday she wanted Neurauter expelled and expressed concern for the safety of students because there was a sex offender on campus.

The girl alleged he choked her at one point before giving her a bra as a present.

"Of course he has regrets and remorse, but he was making an effort to not only acknowledge that, but put this behind him". The University did advise him not to return to school.

Chris and Susan Neurauter said they are proud of how their son has handled himself and disappointed in media coverage that they describe as distorted and sensationalistic.

"It discourages victims from coming forward as perpetrators are accommodated and their actions are excused for the sake of not impeding their 'potential'".

Marshall was asked if Neurauter has indicated whether he's thinking of changing universities.

In a statement Friday, Neurauter's parents said he has done his best to be respectful of the legal system and others in the case.

"On the other hand, expelling a student is a very serious matter and if that is not required for the safety of the students, that may be too harsh a penalty".

While there has been no expulsion, the university has made it clear that Neurauter is not welcome.