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May 3rd, 2012
05:07 PM ET

Mayor reacts to Justice Department investigation into Montana rapes

The mayor of a Montana college town Wednesday welcomed a federal investigation into allegations that sexual assault and rape complaints were improperly handled.

But John Engen, mayor since 2006, was also surprised when he was notified of the probe.

"This is uncharted territory for us," he told CNN.

The U.S. Justice Department announced Tuesday it was launching a probe into allegations that up to 80 complaints of sexual assault over three years were not investigated thoroughly because of gender bias. Of those, 11 cases involved students at the University of Montana - at least two involving football players.

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