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Originally published: 2013-09-10 18:23:35
Last modified: 2013-09-10 18:24:20

Chancellor condemns rape allegations

Chancellor Kenneth Peacock said Monday he was bothered, disappointed and angry by rape charges filed Friday against two Appalachian State University students.

"This is serious. This is not the Appalachian that I want to leave," Peacock said. "I want to address this thing, safety on our campus. This is not who we are, but this is the impression that people are getting."

Boone police arrested David Lee Weber, 22, and Jose Antonio Cuevas, 21, after two female ASU students reported being raped by both men at a Queen Street apartment on Friday night.

Weber and Cuevas were charged with two counts each of second-degree forcible rape, and Weber faces two additional charges of assault by strangulation, police said.

According to the university directory, Weber is a senior studying health promotion, while Cuevas is a junior psychology major.

Both were still in jail as of Tuesday, according to the sheriff's office. Sgt. Shane Robbins of the Boone Police Department said the incident is still under investigation.

Peacock said he received numerous calls and emails during the weekend about the incident and was concerned about the impression the school was giving, including among people in leadership roles in Raleigh and on the UNC system Board of Governors.

He said the university sent out a crime alert, although it was not required. 

"We really want to be known as, 'we don't sweep this under the rug, we put this out there,'" Peacock said.

Appalachian State University was embroiled in controversy during 2011 and 2012 regarding how it responded to two off-campus rape allegations brought by female students involving several athletes. None of the suspects was criminally charged.