Baylor University settles Title IX lawsuit in which gang rape by up to 8 football players was alleged


A former Baylor volleyball player who said the school mishandled her complaint of having been gang-raped by up to eight football players in 2012 and that the university allowed a “rape culture” to persist within the football program has settled her Title IX lawsuit against the school, according to a notice filed in the case Friday.

The lawsuit, filed in May 2017, involved one of the most pivotal allegations in the entire Baylor sexual assault scandal and was a focal point in the investigation by Philadelphia law firm Pepper Hamilton, which resulted in the firing of football coach Art Briles, suspension and eventual resignation of athletic director Ian McCaw, and demotion and later departure of president Kenneth Starr.

At issue was who within the athletic department knew about the woman’s allegation and what they did with that information. The lawsuit claimed several Baylor employees, including coaches, failed to properly act when she and her parents told them about the alleged gang rape, and that the woman was subjected to retaliation from the football players and would eventually transfer.

It also alleged that, prior to her reported gang rape, coaches had established a program in which “football players became increasingly emboldened, knowing that they could break the law, code of conduct, and general standards of human decency with no repercussions,” thus putting her and other female students at a heightened risk of assault.

Neither the woman nor the football players she said raped her have ever been publicly identified. The incident was never reported to police.

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