Connolly ODonnell

Front Royal Town Councilman John P. Connolly calls on Christendom College President Timothy O'Donnell to resign in the wake of the college's handling of past sexual assault cases. Connolly graduated from Christendom in 2008.

FRONT ROYAL — A town councilman who graduated from Christendom College used his time for comment Monday night to call for the removal of Christendom’s president in the wake of the recent accusations that his administration mishandled sexual assault complaints from students.

John P. Connolly said he was disappointed by the “gross lack of responsibility and accountability”

alleged in the stories of women who say the administration led by President Dr. Timothy O’Donnell covered up their sexual assault and harassment cases.

The allegations came to light in January, when Catholic blogger Simcha Fisher shared the story of an alumna who said she was raped off campus by a fellow student when she was a sophomore, then saw her case get ignored. At least two other women have come forward with their own sexual assault stories in the Catholic blogoshpere, prompting online confrontation between those who support the women and those who defend the administration.

Connolly, who graduated from the college in 2008, said he waited to comment on the issue to see if O’Donnell would resign or the Board of

Directors would “make that decision for him.”

“The lack of institutional response is stunning,” Connolly said, “especially for an organization that has prided itself on a sacred bond between students, their families and the school.”

Connolly said if O’Donnell remains in the position, it would erode trust in the college.

“If he truly loves the college, he must step down,” Connolly said.

Christendom officials could not be reached for comment as of press time.

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