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SportReport: Ex-Michigan State student speaks out about alleged 2015 rape by basketball players

03:15  11 april  2019
03:15  11 april  2019 Source:   usatoday.com

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Three unnamed Michigan State basketball players are accused of raping a female student in April 2015 , one week after losing to Duke in the Final Four, according to a federal lawsuit filed on Monday. According to the lawsuit, the woman alleges that in addition to the incident, the university coerced her

A Michigan State student alleges she was raped by three basketball players and was discouraged by the Lansing school from reporting it to the authorities. Suit alleges players raped female student week after 2015 Final Four. The woman in Monday’s lawsuit remains a student at Michigan State .

Report: Ex-Michigan State student speaks out about alleged 2015 rape by basketball players© Provided by Gannett Co., Inc. A sign at the Michigan State University campus in East Lansing, Michigan. Four years after she says she was raped by Michigan State University basketball players, a former Michigan State student plans to hold a news conference Thursday about her federal lawsuit against the school.

“I don’t want any other girl who has gone through this, or who God forbid may have to go through something like this, to feel for one second that they should be too afraid to come out and do something,” Bailey Kowalski said in a phone interview last week with the New York Times, which published it Wednesday.

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A former student alleges that three players raped her in 2015 and the school discouraged her from While Doe spoke with other basketball players , one asked her if she would like to visit his Michigan State will likely also argue that Doe hasn’t alleged sufficient facts to show deliberate indifference or

Kowalski, who had not previously been named, filed a federal lawsuit in April 2018 against Michigan State over the case. She has not named the players involved.

Michigan State has fought the case in federal court and a motion to dismiss it is pending. The school's lawyers have argued that Kowalski can't sue them because the rape didn't happen on campus.

"Plaintiff has every right to pursue appropriate criminal and civil remedies against the students who assaulted her," the filing says. "Plaintiff, however, cannot show that MSU is responsible for criminal actions that did not occur on its campus. Nor can she fault MSU’s conduct after the assault where she never told any MSU employees who were in a position to take action, and she never requested any remedies from MSU that were not provided."

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A lawsuit filed in federal court alleges three Michigan State basketball players raped a woman in The woman, who remains a student at MSU, alleges she was at Harper’s Bar when the Spartans’ The woman reported the rape to a counselor at the Michigan State University Counseling Center on

CLOSE. Three Michigan State basketball players raped a student in 2015 , one week after the Final Four Detroit Free Press. Former Michigan governor John Engler speaks at the Michigan State A female Michigan State University student who alleges she was discouraged from reporting a rape

Kowalski told the Times that Michigan State has attacked her in an effort to stop others.

“They went out to the press and essentially addressed my lawsuit as a lie,” Kowalski said, “which basically was a message to anyone else coming forward with allegations similar to mine that, ‘If you’re going to do that, we’re going to completely exploit you.’”

The suit alleges three unnamed players — identified only as John Doe 1, 2 and 3 — took the 18-year-old student, Jane Doe, home from an East Lansing bar between the evening of April 11, 2015, and the morning of April 12.

Kowalski alleges she was at Harper’s Bar when the Spartans’ basketball team arrived after midnight. One of the players offered to buy her a drink and asked whether she would like to meet “other guys” from the team. The woman, who was a sports journalism major, alleges one of the players then invited her to a party at an apartment and one player “lied” and told the woman her roommate was on her way to the party.

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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 — but there was no party and her roommate was not there.

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'Feeling discombobulated'

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 for 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.

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The lawsuit alleges the first player and a third player took turns raping her after the second player. 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 woman reported the rape to a counselor at the MSU Counseling Center on April 20, 2015, and completed an initial intake and assessment. When she disclosed to the counselor that the three men who allegedly raped her were MSU basketball players, the female counselor’s demeanor reportedly changed and she told the alleged victim she needed another person in the room with them. According to the lawsuit, it was not clear who the additional person was or why the person was brought into the room.

'An uphill battle'

According to the lawsuit, the MSU Counseling Center staffers then “made it clear to Plaintiff that if she chose to notify the police, she faced an uphill battle that would create anxiety and unwanted media attention and publicity as had happened with many other female students who were sexually assaulted by well-known athletes.”

The staff members, per the court filing, then advised the woman they had seen a lot of these cases with “guys with big names” and the best thing to do is to “just get yourself better."

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Kowalski never reported the alleged sexual assault to police, said Karen Truszkowski, the woman’s attorney. The lawsuit asserts that the counseling center failed to properly advise her and even implied it would not be in her "best interest to report the incident to law enforcement."

After the lawsuit was filed, MSU issued a statement denying the counseling center suggested she keep quiet. That statement included details about her counseling center visits. After the Free Press wrote a story about how the statement likely violated student privacy laws, MSU apologized for the statement and took it down from its website.

The Free Press later reported that then-interim President John Engler was directly involved in the crafting of the statement. Engler has since been forced out of office.

Contact David Jesse: 313-378-6684 or [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter: @reporterdavidj

This article originally appeared on Detroit Free Press: Report: Ex-Michigan State student speaks out about alleged 2015 rape by basketball players

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