05/01/2014 03:14 pm ET Updated May 01, 2014

Massachusetts Government Tweets 'Sexual Assault Is Always Avoidable'

The official Twitter account for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts sent out a message on Wednesday that "sexual assault is always avoidable," sparking outrage over the suggestion that rape victims could somehow have avoided being assaulted.

The tweet, which linked out to a blog post in honor of the state's Sexual Assault Awareness Month, was taken down at 9 a.m. Thursday morning, 12 hours after it was first posted. Geoff Kula, director of the Massachusetts government's website, issued a statement and a set of apologetic tweets.

In the statement, Kula blamed the controversial tweet on a staffer's "failure to follow established procedures" for social media.

"Having spoken with the author [of the tweet] this morning, it is clear there was no malicious intent behind the tweet; the tweet inaccurately summarized the content in the linked-to blog post, which discussed services available for victims of sexual assault," Kula said. "The author has agreed to participate in sexual assault awareness training."


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