Dartmouth College alumnus charged with rape, assault after alleged frat house attack

  • Theta Delta Chi fraternity at Dartmouth College has been placed on probation following allegations of misconduct. The Theta Delta Chi house is on West Wheelock Street in Hanover Friday, November 15, 2013. (Valley News - James M. Patterson) Theta Delta Chi fraternity at Dartmouth College.Valley News — James M. Patterson James M. Patterson

  • Theta Delta Chi fraternity at Dartmouth College has been placed on probation following allegations of misconduct. The Theta Delta Chi house is on West Wheelock Street in Hanover Friday, November 15, 2013. (Valley News - James M. Patterson) Theta Delta Chi fraternity at Dartmouth College has been suspended following allegations of misconduct related to drugs and alcohol. The fraternity is on West Wheelock Street near the Dartmouth green. Valley News — James M. Patterson James M. Patterson

Valley News Staff Writer
Published: 8/18/2023 8:56:20 PM
Modified: 8/20/2023 12:26:25 AM

HANOVER — A 25-year-old Dartmouth College alumnus has been indicted and charged with raping and physically assaulting an 18-year-old woman at a campus fraternity house.

Kyle Clampitt, a 2020 graduate and member of the men’s lacrosse team from New Jersey, faces 12 counts of aggravated felonious sexual assault and two counts of second-degree assault/strangulation in indictments handed up in Grafton Superior Court in June, according to court records.

The indictments allege that on April 23, 2022, Clampitt, who was listed at 6-foot-3 and 212 pounds in his senior year lacrosse team profile, overpowered the victim with “superior physical strength” and kicked and strangled her while ignoring pleas of “no” and “stop.”

Reached by phone on Friday, Clampitt said, “I have no comment,” and referred inquiries to his attorney, James Reis, of Portsmouth, N.H. Reis did not respond to requests for comment on Friday. State court records do not show a plea has been entered into the docket.

Clampitt has notified the court that he waived his right to arraignment and extradition proceedings and is currently free on an unsecured $10,000 bail bond, according to court documents. The next court date in the case is a “dispositional conference” scheduled for Sept. 19, when the prosecutor and defense attorney update the court as to the status of the case.

A LinkedIn profile that identified Clampitt as a real estate agent with the Boynton Beach, Fla., office of Coldwell Banker was recently taken offline. He previously worked as a technical recruiter in San Francisco, the profile showed.

“The individual under indictment, an alumnus at the time the alleged actions took place, was issued a no-trespass order in May 2022 which remains in effect,” college spokeswoman Diana Lawrence said via email on Friday. “We understand the gravity and sensitivity of the allegations, and we assure our students, faculty, staff and the wider community that we have cooperated fully with law enforcement.”

Theta Delta Chi referred questions to Lebanon attorney Gary Apfel, who represents the Theta Delta Chi Corp., which owns the fraternity property located next to St. Thomas Episcopal Church on West Wheelock Street.

“The corporation is deeply disturbed by the allegations contained in the indictments and has zero tolerance for sexual assault,” Apfel said via email on Friday.

Clampitt came back to Hanover in April “to attend a Dartmouth alumni lacrosse gathering and not for the purposes of attending any event at the fraternity,” Apfel said, adding “prior to this incident, he was not known by the fraternity nor the corporation for engaging in any sort of violent behavior or sexual misconduct. None of the current members of the fraternity know the accused, and none had any involvement in the incident.”

Apfel said that members of Theta Delta Chi learned about the alleged rape on April 24 and none “were involved or had any prior personal knowledge” of what is alleged to have occurred. When members learned about it, they “immediately provided support to the woman involved and then reported the incident,” he said.

Theta Delta Chi then “promptly issued a no-trespass letter to Mr. Clampitt and later assisted the college in doing the same. Since that time, both undergraduate members of the fraternity and the corporation have been assisting law enforcement with investigation requests by the Hanover Police Department,” Apfel said.

The fraternity “is committed to the safety of all who visit the house and will not tolerate illegal action of any sort” and wants “justice to be served” in the matter, he said.

The student-run newspaper, The Dartmouth, reported last week that the former president of Theta Delta Chi, who graduated in June, sent out an email with a four-page letter titled “Preventing and responding to sexual violence at TDX” attached on May 1 to an unknown number of people in the Dartmouth community confirming that “as most readers are aware, a serious criminal incident took place at TDX on the night of Saturday, April 23, 2022.”

The letter stated that in the immediate aftermath of the alleged rape, the fraternity canceled “formal social events at the house for at least three weeks” and was closing the house to “all alumni, including former brothers” when hosting campus events, according to The Dartmouth.

“It should come as no surprise to us that female guests often feel unsafe at our house,” the letter stated, according to The Dartmouth.

Actions taken by the fraternity included implementing gender-based violence training for new members and additional training for fraternity officers “as a precondition for their assumption of office,” The Dartmouth reported.

Theta Delta Chi is sometimes referred to as the “Boom Boom Lodge,” a name given to the fraternity after a Prohibition-era incident in which a fraternity brother was shot and killed over a stolen bottle of whiskey by a fellow Dartmouth student who ran a bootlegging operation, according to the fraternity’s own folklore.

The fraternity was suspended for seven months in 2013 and placed on probation for three years due to alcohol and drug violations.

Last year, a 24-year-old alumnus who was a Theta Delta Chi member — as well as a 2020 graduate and member of the men’s lacrosse team — fell off Ledyard Bridge and died from his injuries when he had returned to Hanover to attend his pandemic-delayed graduation ceremony.

Contact John Lippman at jlippman@vnews.com.

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