A former student who accused three former student athletes of sexual assault in 2006 has filed a personal injury lawsuit against the university, alleging that various administrators attempted to cover up the reported assault.
The plaintiff, identified only by the initials K.S., said a university official “urged her not to report the drugging and gang-rape,” according to the petition filed Friday in a Tarrant County district court.
According to the petition, the university did not take the necessary measures to prevent the assault, including “knowingly and/or negligently recruiting athletes with known histories of sexual misconduct and criminal misbehavior.”
The former student also accused the university of providing inadequate security and improper care to the plaintiff after the reported assault.
The list of defendants includes Chancellor Victor Boschini, Provost Nowell Donovan, head football coach Gary Patterson, former basketball coach Neil Dougherty and sexual harassment officer Susan Adams, as well as the three former student athletes who were accused of sexual assault.
Tracy Syler-Jones, associate vice chancellor for marketing and communication, said it is against university policy to comment on pending lawsuits and referred to a statement e-mailed to the Skiff.
“The university provided emotional support and assistance to the student through its Victim’s Advocate program, and took prompt disciplinary action by removing and ultimately permanently separating from TCU the students accused of the alleged assault,” according to the statement.
Former TCU basketball players Shannon Behling and Virgil Allen Taylor and former football player Lorenzo Labell Jones were arrested in October 2006 on charges of sexual assault after being accused of assaulting a freshman student in Moncrief Hall. The woman, then 18, told police she went to Taylor’s room after Taylor said he would repay her money he owed. The woman told police she passed out after drinking a sports drink and awoke to find Taylor having sex with her. Police identified Behling and Jones as suspects in the ensuing investigation.
Behling and Taylor were indicted in October and December 2007, respectively. Jones was the only defendant not indicted.
The Tarrant County District Attorney’s office dropped Jones’ aggravated sexual assault by threat charge in February, citing insufficient evidence. Behling’s and Taylor’s cases were dropped in May under prosecutorial discretion, meaning the prosecutor agreed to drop charges but may reopen the case if new evidence surfaces.
The plaintiff’s petition did not detail a specific amount in damages requested by the plaintiff, but said they include medical and tuition costs, as well as those for physical and emotional pain.
News Editor Julieta Chiquillo contributed to this report.