Lawsuit claiming lack of protection for alleged sexual assault victims names UNL

Published: Apr. 30, 2020 at 11:17 AM CDT
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The University of Nebraska is named in a lawsuit filed by seven women on Wednesday alleging the NCAA failed to protect them from alleged sexual assaults.

According to court records acquired by 1011 NOW, the University of Nebraska, the University of Michigan, and an unnamed school from the American East Conference are named in the lawsuit, which was filed in Michigan Western District Court.

The lawsuit alleges the NCAA failed “to address gender-based violence committed by male student-athletes against female students and student-athletes at colleges and universities.”

Among the seven plaintiffs, three are female student-athletes. One plaintiff is former Husker volleyball player Capri Davis. Davis played for the Huskers until she took a medical leave of absence in the fall before signing to continue her career at Texas.

In the lawsuit, Davis claims two Nebraska football players groped her and another student athlete at a party in April 2019. The lawsuit claims she reported it to the University’s Title IX office and the Office of Institutional Equity and Compliance, however, no investigation was initiated.

Around August 2019, the complaint states Davis learned that the two people who groped her and the other unnamed student athlete were accused of raping another student.

The lawsuit does not provide names of the two men, but former Husker football players Katerian LeGrone and Andre Hunt were arrested and charged with first-degree sexual assault stemming from an incident that reportedly occurred in August 2019.

After the report of the August assault, the complaint states Davis and her friend decided to report the incident that happened in April 2019 for a third time.

In October, an investigation was launched into the groping, according to court records.

That same month, the complaint states that Davis and the unnamed student athlete attended a Halloween party and discovered the two individuals who assaulted them were there.

The plaintiffs claim the two men approached them at the party and began “yelling at them, sexually harassing them, and threatening them for reporting them.”

Due to policies prohibiting retaliation in Title IX investigations, the plaintiffs reported the incident to the UNL Title IX Institutional Equity and Compliance (IEC) and the Lincoln Police Department, but further investigation did not take place, the complaint states.

On December 5, 2019, the unidentified student athlete received a letter from UNL IEC informing her that there were no findings on the groping incident of her and Davis.

In late December 2019, a meeting was called between an employee at the Title IX office and the two plaintiffs.

In this meeting, the unidentified student athlete said she was also raped by one of the two people in question in August 2018, but did not report it because she “wanted to try to forget.”

In January, the plaintiff received a letter from UNL IEC informing her that no finding was being made in the rape investigation, according to court records.

Another portion of the lawsuit claims Davis was advised by UNL staff to address rumors on social media after she took a leave of absence from the volleyball team due to feeling depressed following the alleged groping.

The lawsuit states that rumors were widespread on campus that Davis was pregnant, and the father was a Husker football player. The rumor was not true, the complaint states.

According to the lawsuit, “Media and communications staff at UNL advised Davis that she should address the pregnancy rumors,” although the football player was not advised to do the same.

In November, Davis posted on social media “thank you for the concerns for my health this season but just so we’re clear, i will not be expecting ANYBODYS child any time soon ;)”,.

In December, Davis announced she was leaving the University and going to play volleyball at Texas.

Another allegation is mentioned in the lawsuit, this one from a former UNL student who said she was raped by a football player in 2015.

The unnamed person brought her concerns to the Title IX office and claims the office did not interview potential witnesses she provided. An investigation later found there had been no wrongdoing, the lawsuit states.

The University did not comment on the lawsuit, saying it “cannot comment on ongoing litigation.”