Some Serious Questions Surrounding Elizabeth Seeberg

Posted: December 3, 2010 in Notre Dame, sports

I don’t know what it must feel like to be Elizabeth Seeberg’s father.  I can only imagine.  And in my imagination I picture a long prison sentence for myself (that is if I got caught).

Only within the past couple of weeks has anything really been public.  But according to the news, she is a Saint Mary’s student who was allegedly sexually assaulted by a Notre Dame Football player.  After the alleged assault she followed every protocol to report what had happened.  And what happened next?  Nothing.  Then, Elizabeth took her own life two weeks later.

The story just brings questions to mind.  Then this week someone sent me a link to this blog written by Roger Canaff, a prosecutor, that perfectly addressed the questions that should come to mind regarding this situation.

Here is a link to his blog post.  If you get a moment – you should read it.  If for no other reason than for justice – which at this moment – its desire must burn in the heart of the father of Elizabeth Seeberg.

(or another story expressing concern from the sports world)

  1. bob rocklin says:

    This was a tragedy indeed, but you and people such as Mr. Canaff want to act as judge/jury/hangman without any facts. The Media slammed ND for a conspiracy cover up and they did not contact local LE. Now the fact comes out that local LE and NOT ND dropped the ball. ND turned over their files on the case.

    Why do you and the media who know little about the case – think that this was a rape case ?

    There are many known facts that just do not make sense at this point. I beg the questions:

    A few days after the alleged crime – the victim and her parents went to an ND FB game. Given the horrors a victim goes through with a rape – why would they go to a game with the alleged guy playing on the team ? Makes no sens.

    ND has been chastized for not releasing information – when in fact by law they are forbidden from doing so. Is it not odd also that U-Dayton also refuses to releases information as to why Ms.Seeberg left that University after one session ? No – because they can’t by law.

    ND has always suspended athletes and students alike when charges are filed – none have been field so why should the player be thrown out of school ?

    Ms. Seeberg went to a local medical facility and was administered a rape kit. One would assume the results were completed many weeks ago . Typically in cases such as this, the exam and tests conducted determine if trauma occurred and also checks for DNA. If these had turned up enough proof – LE typically files charges based on those results.

    ST Joseph’s County LE are handling the case – let them complete their work – if charges are warranted – prosecute whomever quickly and punish them.

    Interesting – if no signs of rape were evident ( there is no way around that ) was the incident completely as described ? There are a number of possible scenarios – hopefully the factual account will be revealed in the not too distant future.

  2. the other ed says:

    Mr. Rocklin…
    #1…How do you know so much more about this case than we or the media do?
    #2…Have you ever been sexually assaulted? Because only then, can you attest to the behavior and mindset of the victim
    #3…Even with a rape kit performed, many crimes go without charges being filed because of a lack of DNA evidence…

    I agree, let us not rush into judgement, EITHER WAY! You have obviously already condemned Ms Seeberg as a liar without facts, so to criticize on your part is, at the very least, insensitive…remember, people do not take their own lives because everything is going great…

  3. Jennifer Koczan says:

    Mr. Rocklin- Spoken like a man. Bravo. Got daughters? I want to point out to you that this isn’t about sports. It’s about a girl who was assaulted and took her life. You really need to get over the fact that your precious university made a mistake.. It’s ok Bob. You’ll still get your sports and they won’t stop selling “The Shirt” every year.

    It’s actually people like yourself who have an opinion already that this girl is a liar that prevented the whole thing from being investigated in the first place. Do you really think that the university wants their name in the paper regarding a rape investigation? Not if they can cover it up or keep it quiet. Especially a Catholic school.

    Based on your attitude you think that this girl got dumped after she slept with a guy so it’s all about revenge because she’s embarrassed.

    Of COURSE she was a jilted female who fell victim to a hormone driven boy and then got dumped. Of COURSE!! Now she’s a campus slut who spreads her legs for football players. OF COURSE!! Now she’s got some sort of reputation so OF COURSE she’s going to cry rape.

    Give me a break. Not today. If that were the case she wouldn’t be dead.

    It makes perfect sense for this girl to attend a game with her parents. Do YOU know the facts surrounding her attendance? My guess would be to point out the kid that assaulted her.

    This girl in small. I’ve met a lot of these athletes and every single one of them are much larger than she was. You don’t have to attack a woman by dragging them by her hair to rape them either. Have you ever been to a college party? Loud? Lots of people? Available quiet areas?

    You don’t have a lot of visible trauma to prove you were raped. Her rape kit would collect hair and fluids and she would have been evaluated for tearing and bruising. If the kid was smart and used a condom, then spermicide and other chemicals or related evidence of a condom would be collected or observed.

    There are a lot of actual rape situations where the rape kit can only prove that the victim had sex with the perpetrator. Why? Because the perp was 250# and the victim was 100-120#. Hard to kick and fight to get the bruises you’re looking for. The perp probably out weighed her by 150- 200#

    Did it ever across your mind also that she probably didn’t know what to do after it happened or was frightened? They describe her as meek. A meek person goes home, cleans up, hides and goes downhill from there. I’m surprised she even told anyone.

    Notre Dame / St Mary’s is guilty of not notifying the proper authorities when the “incident” was first reported. The St. Joseph County Police and the prosecutors office were not notified of a possible crime when it occurred. They had no idea until the media called attention to it. It DOES NOT matter what story she was telling. It’s up to the POLICE to decide if something happened or not, not the university.

    In the event of rape and sex assault you CAN discuss cases, you CANNOT name victims. If investigators did not want information released then they would say that. However, it’s hard to keep a tight lip on facts when you don’t report the crime to get the police involved in the first place.

    You really don’t know why this girl left school? You really need someone to explain that to you? Seriously. You can’t figure that out?

    I am of the opinion that the university is more interested in covering their tracks to protect their name, their reputation and their MONEY. I am certain that the powers that be in the university are wringing their hands wondering just how long this little problem will take to go away. The school screwed up. It wasn’t handled right and now this girl has died. It isn’t just that it wasn’t handled correctly, it’s also that they FAIL to acknowledge.

    It’s not even about protecting an athlete ( as a person ) against a false accusation. It’s about winning games and money. It’s not about a kid having a label wherever they go for the rest of their lives either.. He does however get to LIVE with what happened. Wow imagine that if he IS guilty.

    Is it the school’s fault that she died, no. The assault is an excuse for her suicide. I will admit to that. I will not go along with a school who every single year allows the students and student athletes to run wild get arrested and then get them out of trouble or not punish them . After all, it’s the police that gives them alcohol etc etc.

    The blog post by the prosecutor is spot on. I respect your opinion but I do not agree with you. I do want you to think about the points that I covered. It’s not about being a judge and jury. It’s about a university who failed to acknowledge.

  4. Reasonable says:

    Ms. Koczan,

    Let me just say that your rant is written (not spoken, see nobody is actually speaking here but rather typing) like a menopausal woman who got dumped by a jock back in high school and just can’t let it go. You have let your imagination run dangerously wild in making up a scene that is absolutely contrary to the facts of this case. First of all, your guess that she likely went to the game “to point out the kid that assaulted her” is absolutely ridiculous. Have you ever seen a football game? 60+ players in pads and helmets on each sideline is not exactly the prime situation to point out who her alleged attacker was. I mention this not because I have issue with her attendance, rather I just believe that it is the first of many illogical conclusions you have formed.

    Secondly, you attack Mr. Rocklin for being someone who has already formed an opinion of Ms. Seeberg as a liar, yet you have the audacity to make statements such as “if the kid was smart and used a condom…” which clearly show that you have already written this kid off a guilty. Smells a little bit like hypocrisy doesn’t it? Furthermore, this statement shows that you clearly have not familiarized yourself with the case at all. It has been stated many times that penetration was never one of her claims, and more recently the true allegation has actually come to light, he touched her breasts. I by no means am belittling the traumatic effect any unwelcome advance may have on a young lady, but rather think that it is important to lay out actual facts rather than spouting nonsense just to further a point.

    All of your comments about why rape can be hard to detect have absolutely no relevance in this particular incident. And yes, college parties are loud, and there are lots of places to slip off to, but had you actually done your research you would know that this particular incident occurred in a college dorm… there was a party in one part of the rooms and she willingly went with him, and another couple to a separate dorm room.

    Did it ever cross your mind that this wasn’t the only case that NDSP, as well as St. Joseph County had in front of them at the moment? Investigations don’t happen with the snap of a finger, there is a process. There is no cover up here, only the tragic loss of a girl who probably should have been under better supervision given her medical history coupled with traumatic events. Perhaps allowing an unstable girl, diagnosed with depression, to possess a bottle of pills that could kill her, rather than having the university health center handle them, was not the most prudent decision.

    You are entitled to your opinion but I do not agree with it, and I do not respect it, due to the fact that it has clearly been formed without any understanding of this specific case.

  5. Just Some Guy says:

    Why would she have a rape kit procedure done if all that she had alleged was unwanted breast touching?

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