Update: UMass student indicted on rape charge

Case transferred to Hampshire Superior Court


Judith Gibson-Okunieff

(Collegian File Photo)

By Kathrine Esten, Assistant News Editor

University of Massachusetts student Ryder Chilcoff was indicted on March 6, 2018, by a Hampshire Country grand jury on one count of rape in connection to an alleged incident that occurred in a UMass campus dormitory on Dec. 9 of last year.

Mary Carey, communications director of the Northwestern District Attorney’s Office, explained that “Chilcoff was previously charged in January in the Eastern Hampshire District Court” and that the indictment will “transfer the case to the Hampshire Superior Court.”

An arraignment date has not been set.

Chilcoff, a resident of Villa Park, California, was arraigned in the Eastern Hampshire District Court on a $7,500 cash bail on Jan. 30 on three counts of rape, as previously reported by The Massachusetts Daily Collegian.

UMass Police began investigating the alleged incident on Dec. 19 after following up on a reported vandalism to Chilcoff’s dorm room door in John Quincy Adams Hall on campus, according to the Daily Hampshire Gazette.

When police interviewed a woman whom they believed was possibly involved in the vandalism, she began crying and told officers she woke up on Dec. 9 in Chilcoff’s bed without any pants or underwear on and had no recollection of how she got there or what happened inside the room, according to a statement of facts written by Derek Napoli, a UMass police officer.

MassLive reported that when interviewed by the police, Chilcoff initially said he had met a woman at the party, but later said he had made that part up and told investigators to “just cross all that out. Sorry.”

Napoli wrote in his report that due to the woman’s intoxication level, she was not able to give consent.

In 2016, there were 15 accounts of reported rape in UMass residence halls, according to UMass’ 2016 Annual Security Report.

Kathrine Esten can be reached at [email protected] and followed on Twitter at @KathrineEsten.