Teen says she was raped at UF by other juveniles

Published: Friday, January 30, 2004 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Friday, January 30, 2004 at 12:46 a.m.
An Alachua County high school student told police she was raped twice during a school-sponsored program at the University of Florida, authorities said Thursday.
The 17-year-old girl was at the Reitz Union taking part in the Community Based Training Program, said University Police Lt. Joe Sharkey. She told authorities she was raped in a fourth-floor bathroom on Monday and Tuesday by two juveniles she knows, Sharkey said.
Police are investigating. No charges had been filed as of Thursday afternoon.
The Community Based Training Program is part of the Alachua County School Board Exceptional Student Education program.
Students with disabilities such as visual, learning or mental challenges learn vocational job training through the program, said Vicente Perez, ESE director.
Each group of about two to eight students, depending on their needs, leaves campus for a part of each school day to go to a work site with a job coach, Perez said.
Perez wouldn't talk about the incident Thursday because he hadn't learned the specifics.
But, he added, "Definitely changes need to be made if something did happen."
The program started in 1987 and has been a good training opportunity for the children, Perez said.
Kathy Ciotola can be reached at 338-3109 or ciotolk@gvillesun.com.

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