June 22, 2018

Woman sues Michigan State, says 3 basketball players raped her in 2015

11 April 2018, 11:18 | Franklin Nunez

Mitchell Layton

Mitchell Layton

None of the players were named in the suit.

However, after the alleged victim disclosed the three alleged rapists were from the men's basketball team, the counselor announced she needed another person in the room. Earlier in the week, the team had been eliminated from the NCAA Final Four in a contest against Duke. There is no way of knowing because she didn't have a toxicology report done in time. The players began buying her drinks and then invited her to a party at a nearby apartment building. Once at the apartment - and realizing her roommate wasn't there - the lawsuit states the woman felt "discombobulated" and "tried to send a phone text, but she could not control her thumbs to formulate a text".

She agreed to go to the party, but upon entering the apartment, she found no party.

"I was crying. I was trying to push myself up, and I couldn't move", she told Outside the Lines.

In the suit, the woman alleges she was at Harper's Bar when the MSU basketball team arrived after midnight.

Shortly afterwards, the victim was taken into a bedroom where each player took their turn in raping her.

This policy has "emboldened male athletes and has given them unwritten permission to commit acts of sexual assault without effect", the student said in her lawsuit, which seeks compensatory and punitive damages. But she made the student believe it would not be in her best interest to report the alleged rape, as it would create unwanted anxiety.

John Doe 2 offered to show her his basketball memorabilia, the woman was then given a drink of water.

Another MSUCC staff member was brought into the room and the alleged victim was not made aware why the staff member was brought in.

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Counselors also reportedly did not tell her about her options that didn't include reporting to police - like filing a Title IX complaint - nor was she told she could ask for a no-contact order that would have prevented the players from being in her residence hall. The staff also allegedly told the woman that fighting against "guys with big names" would be a losing proposition for her.

She was told that the three basketball players she referred to were well known athletes and if she pursued a lawsuit against them that she would be swimming with very big fish.

The woman said she was so discouraged that she decided not to report the rapes to law enforcement, the lawsuit said.

As FOX 47's Cryss Walker tells us, some students say they're not surprised.

According to the lawsuit, the woman in October 2015 "had become so traumatized, depressed, and withdrawn to the point that she was admitted to the Sparrow Hospital outpatient psychiatric dayprogram for intensive psychiatric treatment".

In fall 2015, she stopped going to class. The university provided no guidance beyond that. She withdrew from classes that semester and, according to the lawsuit, changed her major upon her return.

"MSU has fostered a culture in which female victims are discouraged from reporting sexual assaults when those assaults are perpetrated by male athletes, thus protecting the university, the male athletics programs, and the male athletes at the expense of the female victims".

In addition to Simon, former MSU Athletic Director Mark Hollis resigned in January just hours before an ESPN investigation was published detailing a pattern of "denial, inaction and information suppression" involving sexual assault and gender discrimination cases linked to the football and basketball programs.

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