Rape investigation follows Calhoun prom party

Gilmer County, Ga., sheriff's officials are investigating a reported rape that allegedly took place at a cabin where two dozen young people were partying after Calhoun High School's prom last Saturday.

The sheriff's office reported that about 25 young people from Calhoun and one from Dalton, Ga., attended the party, which was held at a cabin owned by one of the student's parents.

Multiple reports from the community assert that several young men were involved in the alleged assault of a young woman.

At this point, no one has been charged.

"The report and statements from witnesses indicate that all, or at least nearly all, of the 18- to 20-year-old attendees were drinking alcohol and were intoxicated," Sheriff Stacy Nicholson said in a statement.

Calhoun City Schools Superintendent Michelle Taylor said the high school is "fully cooperating with Gilmer County" in the investigation, but stressed that the alleged incident did not take place at a school event and occurred in another county.

"It has nothing to do with the school," she said.

She would not say how many students were being questioned by police, saying only that several had been interviewed.

She said it was too soon to say whether students involved in the investigation were facing school-related consequences, or whether it may impact their graduation.

While Taylor said she was aware of the rumors buzzing in the hallways and on social media sites about the alleged incident, she said school officials are addressing the distraction by encouraging students "not to speculate or share untruths."

Asked if the school was providing counseling for students impacted by the alleged assault or the investigation, Taylor said the school's policy is to "provide support for any student who reports such a matter to school administration."

Contact staff writer Kate Harrison at kharrison@timesfreepress.com or 423-757-6673.