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Regents postpone legislation on campus rape reporting

South Dakota higher education officials won’t ask state lawmakers to do away with a requirement that schools automatically report sexual assaults to police.

Mike Rush, executive director of the South Dakota Board of Regents, said Thursday that too many questions arose from law enforcement groups in trying to put together a legislative proposal that would allow the state’s six colleges and two special schools to provide confidential sexual assault reporting. Currently, when student victims of sexual assault come forward, school officials must file a report with law enforcement.

South Dakota statute says anyone with knowledge of a felony who doesn’t disclose that to the proper authorities could face misdemeanor charges punishable with up to one year in jail, a $2,000 fine or both.

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