Robert Givan

Purdue associate professor Robert Givan

A Purdue professor has been charged with two counts of incest in Marion County after his twin adult daughters told police he had molested them since they were as young as 7.

Robert Givan, an associate professor in electrical and computer engineering, said in a statement to the Exponent: "My twin daughters became simultaneously severely mentally ill starting in 2017, and proceeded almost synchronously through intensive inpatient and residential mental health treatments for years, in many facilities in many states, and including many many psychoactive medications. They each also apparently had some assaultive experiences at the hands of other men away from our home during their treatment.

"Only later after a great deal of inpatient treatment did the first signs emerge that they believed they had suffered abuse at my hands, with bizarre and implausible allegations strewn across time and place."

In November, the then-21-year-olds told police of several instances of inappropriate touching and intercourse in Indianapolis and said even more events happened in Tippecanoe County, where they grew up.

No charges have been filed in this county to date.

"I cooperated fully with a local investigation in fall 2020 and January 2021," Givan said in an email. "At that time no allegations in other counties were being stated by the twins, that I was made aware of."

One of the young women told an Indianapolis detective that she has been molested since she was in the third grade and continued she was 18 or 19. She said the abuse started about the time her parents were divorced, which court records say was in 2007.

Both daughters told police they realized early on that a nightly ritual of "tucking them in" or "saying goodnight" really meant their father would lie with them in bed and molest them, the probable cause affidavit said.

Both women said they first discussed the abuse during therapy sessions about 2018.

The Indianapolis detective found two Department of Child Services reports from therapists about the abuse, in 2019 and 2020, but both were "screened out" and not investigated.

Givan's current wife told police that several people were in the house when the girls visited, and she denied that her husband could have molested his daughters, instead blaming "the twins' severe mental health treatment and medications over recent years."

"I am very concerned for the well being of my daughters and the impact of the involvement of the state on my family," Givan wrote in his statement to the Exponent. "I would like my twins to know that I forgive them; their false memories are a tragic condition for them and all of the family."

No hearings have been scheduled in the case as of Wednesday morning.

A Purdue spokesman did not respond to a request for information about Givan's background and employment status.

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