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The Daily Cardinal Est. 1892
Thursday, May 26, 2022

District Attorney drops sexual assault charges filed against UW-Madison employee

The Dane County District Attorney’s office dropped sexual assault charges Monday filed against a University of Wisconsin-Madison employee in July, according to state court records.

The UW-Madison Police Department arrested 32-year-old Saeed Aghdam July 11 for allegedly sexually assaulting a foreign exchange student, with whom he was an “acquaintance,” UWPD spokesperson Marc Lovicott said in a statement.

Aghdam, a research associate in the School of Medicine and Public Health, was charged with fourth-degree sexual assault, false imprisonment–a felony charge–and disorderly conduct.

The state defines fourth-degree sexual assault as “nonconsensual sexual contact,” but does not include intercourse. It is the only “adult sex crime” Wisconsin does not pursue as a felony.

The DA’s office dismissed the sexual assault and false imprisonment charges Monday. However, Aghdam pled guilty to disorderly conduct, a noncriminal offense, Monday.

The Wisconsin State Journal reported Thursday that Aghdam, who had been on paid leave since the charges were filed, was cleared to return to his post at the university Oct. 11 but only after an investigation deemed him a nonthreat to others.

Aghdam maintained his innocence throughout the case and said the woman fabricated the story, according to the State Journal.

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