A 911 call made by a woman near Ohio State’s campus is receiving national attention after she reported she was raped and was told to “quit crying” by the dispatcher.
Although the dispatcher’s handling of the situation was reported on by national outlets such as the Huffington Post and ABC, she was not punished for her handling of the call.
The victim, who said on the call she was staying with friends at an off-campus house, called 911 at about 4 a.m. on June 8 after a man broke in and forced her to perform oral sex at gunpoint. He then stole her money and cell phone.
The house is located on East 14th Avenue, Columbus Division of Police spokeswoman Denise Alex-Bouzounis said Wednesday afternoon.
According to the 911 call, the dispatcher said to the woman, “You’re going to have to quit crying so I can get the information from you.”
After telling the dispatcher she had “no idea” where the suspect entered the house or where the house was located, the dispatcher told the woman, “They’re not going to be able to find him with the information that you’ve given.”
The dispatcher was not reprimanded for her handling of the call because the victim received help, Alex-Bouzounis said.
“There’s regular training that the 911 dispatchers go through and they are trained to be sympathetic and empathetic with callers,” Alex-Bouzounis said. “Could this dispatcher been more sympathetic and empathetic? Sure, but her role was to get the information from the victim and track down the suspect at the same time, which happened.”
Police located the suspect, 30-year-old Michael Callihan, the next morning, Alex-Bouzounis said.
Callihan was charged with rape and burglary and is currently in Franklin County Jail.
His bond is set at $500,000, Alex-Bouzounis said.
About two-thirds of rapes are committed by someone known to the victim, according to the Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network website.
OSU provides services for victims of sexual assault that include counseling, advocacy, wellness and health services through Student Life.