MUNCIE, Ind. – Police arrested a Ball State University student accused of raping a fellow student over the weekend at an off-campus apartment.
The victim told campus police that Ianne Sierra, 19, raped her, according to court documents. The victim said she was at the suspect’s apartment because she had gotten into a fight with her roommate.
Court documents say Sierra forced himself on top of her, pinning her arms down. She said she kept telling him “no” and tried to push him away, but she was unable to do so.
She said a friend picked her up from the apartment, and that’s when she called police.
According to court documents, Sierra admitted to investigators that the victim told him “no” five times.
Sierra also told investigators he mentioned something to investigators about being “friends with benefits.” The victim told police she responded saying “no. you’re my best friend and you’re drunk.”
Victims advocates said most rape cases are committed by someone the victim knows and trusts. Statistics show only four percent of sexual assaults are committed by a stranger.
“They might think is that the right thing to do? I knew this person. I don’t want to get this person in trouble,” explained Tracy Bemis-Smiley, a sexual assault program coordinator with A Better Way.
Bemis-Smiley also said getting to a safe place and seeking help are the first steps after a sexual assault occurs.
“The best time to report is within the first 72 hours. That is the best time to be able to still collect evidence, any physical DNA that might be left behind, chances of catching the perpetrator during that time and also just being able to process what happened.”
Sierra faces a preliminary charge of rape, a Level 3 felony carrying a standard nine-year prison term.