by Sarah Squires
The Winona City Attorney’s Office declined to charge a woman who made up a story about a sexual assault she said occurred near the Winona State University campus.
The 19-year-old WSU student from Rochester initially told police that she’d been walking along Ninth and Huff streets from Morey Hall to Sheehan Hall when she was assaulted. She told police that a man threw a plastic bag over her head from behind and dragged her to a parking lot, where he took off her clothes and touched her inappropriately before she escaped.
But police said that here were inconsistencies in her story and that WSU security video footage did not match up with the report. During an interview several days later, the woman admitted she’d made up the story.
Assistant City Attorney Brian Glodosky said Wednesday that his office has declined to charge the woman with filling a false police report. Initially, police did write a citation to the woman, but forwarded it to the city attorney’s office for confirmation.
“We didn’t take it lightly,” said Glodosky of the review of the potential charges. He said that the woman agreed to pay for the cost of the investigation, and that she had issues that could be better addressed outside of the courtroom. “By all accounts she seems to be a high achieving, bright young girl who made a mistake,” he said. “I don’t think she’s a risk to reoffend.”