Two College students indicted in sexual assault case

Two College students were indicted in the sexual assault of a freshman on Aug. 3 and face up to ten years in state prison if convicted, according to Casey DeBlasio, a spokesperson for the Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office.

Samuel Sarpeh and Christen Solomon, both sophomores at the time, allegedly assaulted the female student on Sept. 1, 2010, during the first week of the fall semester. As of early June, the charges were undecided: Solomon’s case remained pending, and Sarpeh was expected to be charged with a lighter, two-year probationary sentence after pleading guilty to fourth-degree criminal sexual contact, according to a report by the Trenton Times.

However, the victim’s written testimony moved Superior Court Judge Gerald Council to call for a tougher penalty on June 2. The county prosecutor’s office presented the case to a grand jury, which charged both men with a second-degree offense, DeBlasio said.

According to The Times, Assistant Prosecutor Renee Robeson said the victim was attacked after she became intoxicated at a party in Sarpeh’s dorm and approached Sarpeh, a friend of hers, for a place to stay.

The College declined to discuss the case.

“The College takes the safety and security of its students very seriously,” said Stacy Schuster, Executive Director of College Relations. “As is the case with all matters of a sensitive and ongoing nature, in the interests of privacy, the College respectfully declines to comment on ongoing or possible student disciplinary matters.”