A female Michigan State student has filed a federal lawsuit, claiming that three former men’s basketball players raped her at an off-campus apartment in 2015 and that they university urged her not to report it.
According to court documents obtained by USA Today, the unidentified female victim claims she reported the incident to an MSU campus counselor who then advised her not to take her case to the authorities, but instead “get yourself better.”
USA Today reports that the case was filed in U.S. District Court for the Western District of Michigan Southern Division. The suit alleges that three unnamed players took the 18-year-old, first-year female home from an East Lansing bar between the evening of April 11, 2015 and the morning of April 12.
Karen Truszkowski, the plaintiff’s attorney, says she never reported the alleged sexual assault to police.
via USA Today:
The lawsuit says the woman was having a difficult time holding her glass, though she said she did not have a lot to drink. She then accepted a ride to the party from two players — the party was at one of their off-campus apartments — and there was no party and her roommate was not there. The lawsuit alleges the woman “was feeling discombobulated” and tried to send a text but could not control her thumbs and believed she may have been drugged. Then the first player allegedly pulled her into a bedroom and told her, “You are mine for the night.”
After the woman asked fo water and to see basketball memorabilia, the second player then took her to another room when the lights went out. According to the lawsuit, the woman said she was forcefully thrown face-down onto the bed and held so she could not move while the second player raped her from behind. The woman was crying and could not speak, her lawsuit claims, and she did not consent to the activity.
The lawsuit alleges the first player and a third player took turns raping her after the second player finished. The woman claims she does not remember anything until waking up on a couch a few hours later, then called a taxi back to her dorm. There, her roommate told her she did not know about a party. The roommate, the lawsuit states, had been looking for the woman.
The victim, only identified as “Jane Doe” is seeking compensatory and punitive damages from the players. The suit says that Jane Doe resumed classes at the university in January 2016 and changed her major. Furthermore, she sought private psychiatric care in February 2016 and remains on prescribed medication.
Emily Guerrant, MSU’s vice president and university spokesperson, said the university does not comment on pending litigation.