ENS, Supélec… Several rape investigations opened in large schools

The Evry prosecutor’s office told AFP on Friday that it had opened several rape investigations in large schools located on the Saclay plateau, in Essonne south of Paris, after having received “several complaints”.

“Speech has been released” in “closed places where it was difficult to speak and be heard because it was necessary to preserve the reputation of the establishments”, welcomed the prosecutor Caroline Nisand. His prosecution has opened investigations at CentraleSupélec, the Ecole Normale Supérieure (ENS), Polytechnique and the Institute of Optics. Among these rape investigations, three were entrusted to judges: one at CentraleSupélec and two at ENS.

The prosecutor underlined “a dynamic” of freedom of speech which contributed to “lifting the omerta which reigned on the campus” of Saclay, located in the Paris suburbs. The magistrate dates this release from the distribution of an internal questionnaire from the CentraleSupélec engineering school, which had revealed a hundred acts of sexual harassment, sexual assault and rape over the university year.

Similar revelations

The results of this internal investigation had been reported by the school management to the prosecutor of Evry, who then opened a preliminary investigation in October 2021 and went to the establishment to discuss with the students gathered in a full amphitheater, accompanied by the gendarmes. Now, two investigations are underway at CentraleSupélec, following two complaints of rape: one led by the prosecution and the other entrusted to an investigating judge.

Similar revelations had marked Polytechnique, where the management “in shock”, had reported to justice the results of an internal questionnaire. According to this questionnaire, one in four students surveyed said they had been the victim of sexual assault in their schooling and eleven students said they had been victims of rape or attempted rape. The prosecution had opened an investigation in April.

To date, the Evry prosecution has three preliminary investigations in progress, following two complaints of rape at Polytechnique and a report. Two investigations were also entrusted to judges in early June at the Ecole Normale Supérieure (ENS) for rape and sexual assault, following two complaints. A preliminary investigation is underway at the Institut d’Optique for rape and sexual assault. The complainants are all students and the suspicions relate to other students: there is no, “at this time, a relationship of authority” between the complainants and the suspects, specifies the prosecutor.

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