Catholic University dean suspended over tweets questioning a Kavanaugh accuser

A dean at the Catholic University of America has been suspended over tweets that "called into question the v...

Posted: Oct 2, 2018 11:38 PM
Updated: Oct 2, 2018 11:38 PM

A dean at the Catholic University of America has been suspended over tweets that "called into question the validity of some accusations of sexual assault" against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, the Washington, D.C., school's president said.

Will Rainford, who has led the university's School of Social Service since 2013, was suspended for the remainder of the semester over the tweets that President John Garvey said were "unacceptable" and "demonstrated a lack of sensitivity to the victim."

Belief, religion and spirituality

Brett Kavanaugh

Catholics and catholicism

Christianity

Companies

Crime, law enforcement and corrections

Crimes against persons

Criminal offenses

Curricula

Education

Internet and WWW

Julie Swetnick

Misc people

Political Figures - US

Religious education

Religious groups

School violence

Sex crimes

Sexual assault

Sexual misconduct

Social media

Society

Technology

Twitter

Violence in society

"The Catholic University of America has no position on the Kavanaugh matter," Garvey said in a statement Friday.

"But let there be no doubt that our University, and particularly our National Catholic School of Social Service, has a special concern for every victim and survivor of sexual assault."

Rainford has since deleted his Twitter and Facebook accounts, but the student newspaper, The Tower, captured a screenshot of one of the posts targeting Kavanaugh accuser Julie Swetnick.

"Swetnick is 55 y/o. Kavanaugh is 52 y/o. Since when do senior girls hang with freshmen boys? If it happened when Kavanaugh was a senior, Swetnick was an adult drinking with&by her admission, having sex with underage boys. In another universe, he would be victim & she the perp!" Rainford wrote last week on his official university account, according to the paper.

Rainford issued an apology Thursday, saying that his tweet "unfortunately degraded" Swetnick.

"My tweet suggested that she was not a victim of sexual assault," he wrote. "I offer no excuse. It was impulsive and thoughtless and I apologize."

Swetnick is the third woman to come forward with allegations against the Supreme Court nominee.

In a statement to the Senate Judiciary Committee, Swetnick said Kavanaugh was present at a high school party around 1982 where she was the victim of a "gang" rape. She did not identify Kavanaugh as one of her attackers. She said further that over a series of parties, she saw Kavanaugh "consistently engage in excessive drinking and inappropriate contact of a sexual nature with women during the early 1980s."

Kavanaugh denied the allegations and said they were "from the 'Twilight Zone.' "

Rainford's tweets led to a protest Monday on the Washington campus.

"We should expect any opinion he expresses about sexual assault to be thoughtful, constructive, and reflective of the values of Catholic University, particularly in communications from the account handle @NCSSSDean," Garvey said.

"While it was appropriate for him to apologize and to delete his Twitter and Facebook accounts, this does not excuse the serious lack of judgment and insensitivity of his comments."

New York Coronavirus Cases

County data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 448052

Reported Deaths: 33085
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Queens714747239
Kings667377314
Bronx524684940
Nassau460522201
Suffolk459562011
Westchester377181454
New York329383178
Richmond156891085
Rockland14747675
Orange11760498
Erie10873689
Monroe5857289
Dutchess5050153
Onondaga4185205
Albany2979134
Oneida2369123
Ulster223595
Niagara1707101
Putnam156963
Sullivan156848
Broome145069
Schenectady137448
Saratoga98517
Rensselaer89542
Columbia58037
Chautauqua5359
Madison48417
Ontario45435
Oswego4183
Tompkins3900
Warren35433
Steuben34242
Fulton33124
Otsego3245
Orleans32254
Greene31918
Herkimer31810
St. Lawrence3144
Genesee3095
Wayne3065
Chemung3053
Washington28714
Cattaraugus2496
Chenango2487
Tioga22225
Montgomery2194
Livingston2018
Cayuga1952
Jefferson1600
Essex1570
Clinton1545
Cortland1500
Wyoming1315
Delaware1294
Seneca1053
Allegany951
Schoharie830
Franklin640
Yates627
Lewis500
Schuyler370
Hamilton140
Unassigned019
Utica
Clear
44° wxIcon
Hi: 59° Lo: 34°
Feels Like: 44°
Oneonta
Clear
37° wxIcon
Hi: 58° Lo: 34°
Feels Like: 37°
Herkimer
Clear
44° wxIcon
Hi: 58° Lo: 34°
Feels Like: 44°
Thendara
Clear
44° wxIcon
Hi: 52° Lo: 31°
Feels Like: 44°
WKTV Radar
WKTV Temperatures
WKTV Severe Weather
Click here to learn more about A Healthier Mohawk Valley
Saluting Those Who Are Proud 2 Serve
WKTV Golf Card - Under 150 left