Prosecutors withdrew all criminal charges yesterday against two men accused of raping a Temple University student at a fraternity house last month. But soon after the ruling, Temple administrators revoked official recognition of the Alpha Phi Delta fraternity, the house in which the alleged gang rape occurred. Temple spokesperson George Ingram said last night that this was the first time in his 20 years at Temple that a fraternity has lost its recognition. "Our position was that no matter what the [District Attorney] found, what happened in the fraternity on September 12 was not the kind of behavior one expects from a civilized society," Ingram said. Assistant District Attorney Dianne Granlund, chief of the city's Rape Unit, told the judge that it appeared that the ''sexual intercourse did not rise to the level of unlawful sexual intercourse.'' The defendants, 23-year-old Michael Derita and 22-year-old Raymond Evers, were arrested September 13, the day after the alleged incident at the off-campus frat house. The two men had been charged with rape, indecent assault, indecent exposure, conspiracy and unlawful restraint. Municipal Court Judge Louis Presenza agreed to drop the charges, calling the whole incident ''unfortunate.'' ''Sometimes things get out of hand,'' he said. ''I don't know what the answer is . . . The young men and women need to use more common sense.'' Ingram said that the university cannot bring disciplinary charges against any of the individual students because the fraternity house is off campus. Students living in the fraternity house may continue to live there since the house is privately owned, but the fraternity may not participate in any university sanctioned activies. Ingram added that while the decision to withdraw recognition was unanimous, the fraternity may apply for re-recognition in the future. But Assistant DA Granlund said dropping the charges should not be construed as an exoneration of the fraternity members. ''I would not send my daughter to a party at that place,'' she said. The charges were filed after a 19-year-old student told police that she had been gang-raped at the frat house by four Temple students and two former students. Derita and Evers were the only suspects arrested in the case. ''They are not angels,'' Granlund said after the hearing. ''They took advantage of a young woman in the fraternity that night.'' Granlund and Captain Richard Bullick, of the Philadelphia Police Sex Crimes unit, both declined to give details of their investigation, but said additional witnesses had been interviewed. Defense attorney Charles Peruto said the female student had encouraged and invited the sexual activity. He said she had set the party up and bought the beer, and decided the encounter was rape only after hearing two of the men joke about the incident the next day. The woman was not at the hearing. Derita, a recent alumnus of Temple who sells real estate, said after the hearing that the charges had seriously disrupted his life. He refused to say whether he thought what he and Evers did was wrong. ''Whether what we did was immoral was one thing. Whether what we did was illegal is another,'' he said. Both he and Evers said they were sorry for their part in the bad publicity for the university and the fraternity, but not for the female student. ''She's the person that started this mess,'' Evers said. Both men said the woman's name should have been made public. ''If it's right for our names to be published, it's right for her name to be published,'' Derita said. Another rape case at Temple, reported just days after the frat incident last month, is still pending. Facing charges in that case is Mark McGraw, a son of former Philadelphia Phillies pitcher Tug McGraw. The Associated Press contributed to this storyComments powered by Disqus
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