Lawsuit Claims Drugging, Gang Rape at Baylor

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On Tuesday night, Baylor University was hit with a seventh Title IX lawsuit related to a sexual assault scandal that has rocked the football program for nearly a year.

The most recent lawsuit, which was filed by “Jane Doe,” alleges that as many as eight members of the Baylor football team drugged and raped her as part of a 2012 “hazing” ritual.

The Waco Tribune reports that the team allegedly would have freshmen recruits bring female freshmen students to parties for the purpose of gang rape.  “At these parties, the girls would be drugged and gang raped, or in the words of the football players, ‘trains’ would be run on the girls,” the suit reads.

The plaintiff reportedly remembers hearing the players yell to each other about grabbing her phone, and erasing text messages and phone numbers that would have tied them to the victim.

The suit alleges that the crimes were considered to be a “bonding” exercise for the football team. Photos and videos of semiconscious victims would be shared amongst members of the team.

“The girls affected by this are seeking their day in court,” Houston attorney Muhammad Aziz, who is representing the plaintiff in this case, told the Waco Tribune. “Really, what we are seeking to enforce is just a safe education environment for the girls at the school.”

In addition, Baylor football parties would also feature dog fighting, according to the suit.

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The aftermath of the incident involving Doe is also outlined in the lawsuit.

After the plaintiff told her mother about what had happened, they reportedly approached an assistant football coach and gave him the names of the players involved. Following that meeting, the plaintiff and her mother never heard from the coach again.

Players allegedly harassed the plaintiff and her family through text messages using fake phone numbers. Team members also allegedly ransacked the plaintiff’s apartment and stole money. The plaintiff reported the robbery to Waco police, but no charges were ever filed “based on an understanding the players would return her belongings.”

In counseling sessions, the suit alleges that Baylor attempted to dissuade Doe from reporting what she had gone through by presenting her with statistics about how few women report sexual assault, rather than explaining her reporting options via Title IX.

The months-long scandal surrounding the Baylor football program has already led to the firing of coach Art Briles and university president Ken Starr. Athletic director Ian McCaw resigned from his position in the wake of the first wave of allegations.

A ruling by U.S. District Judge Robert Pitman said that sexual assault victims may sue the university under Title IX until spring of 2018, so it’s possible that more alleged victims will come forward with additional lawsuits.

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