Loudoun County says it's withholding sexual assault investigation report to avoid 'retraumatizing' victims

The county laid out a series of measures it would take to prevent future assaults

The Loudoun County School Board laid out on Friday a series of measures to prevent future sexual assaults and said releasing the results of its recent investigation would be illegal as well as risk re-traumatizing those involved.

Earlier this week, a judge sentenced a Loudoun County teenager charged with sexual assault at two separate high schools. The judge found the boy guilty on Wednesday, and ordered him to register as a sex offender, something she said she had never done to a minor before. He will be on supervised probation until his 18th birthday and placed in a residential treatment facility.

"First and foremost, the report cannot be released because the privacy of the families involved must be protected," a school board press release on Friday read, referring to the conclusion of an investigation into how it handled the two high-profile allegations.

"The national interest in this investigation would preclude any chance of allowing the families to heal in private and to move forward with dignity. The Division and our Board believe we must do whatever we can to avoid retraumatizing the students and the families involved in the incidents. Furthermore, the Division is legally obligated to protect student confidentiality. This decision was also based on the advice of legal counsel, which determined that the report falls under the protections of the attorney-client privilege."

LOUDOUN COUNTY SCHOOLS WON'T RELEASE REPORT ON INVESTIGATION INTO HANDLING OF SEXUAL ASSAULT ALLEGATIONS

Loudoun County School Board members vote to enact Policy 8040 during a school board meeting at the Loudoun County Public Schools Administration Building on Aug. 11, 2021 in Ashburn, Virginia.

Loudoun County School Board members vote to enact Policy 8040 during a school board meeting at the Loudoun County Public Schools Administration Building on Aug. 11, 2021 in Ashburn, Virginia. (Ricky Carioti/The Washington Post)

Fox News Digital noted on Thursday that the school district refused to release the report — a move that will likely provoke further criticism as some, including the county sheriff, have accused the district of wrongdoing.

So far, Loudoun County Public Schools (LCPS) has appointed a new interim Title IX coordinator and provided additional mandatory training "regarding the timely reporting of disciplinary data to the Virginia Department of Education," according to the press release.

People gather to protest different issues including the board’s handling of a sexual assault that happened in a school bathroom in May, vaccine mandates and critical race theory during a Loudoun County School Board meeting in Ashburn, Virginia, U.S., Oct. 26, 2021.

People gather to protest different issues including the board’s handling of a sexual assault that happened in a school bathroom in May, vaccine mandates and critical race theory during a Loudoun County School Board meeting in Ashburn, Virginia, U.S., Oct. 26, 2021. (REUTERS/Leah Millis)

The release added that it would "expand the size and scope of the Title IX office by hiring a full-time Title IX Coordinator and additional investigative staff to increase capacity in processing allegations and complaints; conduct a senior administration-level review of every potential harassment and discrimination complaint made over the past 12 months to ensure that all Title IX processes were followed and complaints were appropriately addressed and take corrective action where appropriate; and provide additional mandatory training to all school administrators to reinforce the understanding of their obligations regarding allegations of sexual harassment and assault."

Ian Prior, who leads Fight for Schools PAC, told Fox News that these measures were too late.

"They're certainly necessary, but why wasn't this done before?" asked Prior, who is a Loudoun father and former Trump administration official.

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"They spent all this time focused on replacing equality and meritocracy with 'equity,' pornography books in the library and open bathrooms, while not ensuring that students were safe from sexual assault."

Prior was referring to the school district's equity trainings and other materials that were part of a raging debate about critical race theory in both the county and U.S.