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Michigan State University Student Discouraged by University From Reporting Alleged Rape Lawsuit States

Michigan State has been under fire in the media for its handling of Title IX cases and violent acts against women, and this is the latest victims story of MSU’s neglect.

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A student who attends Michigan State University filed a federal lawsuit against the institution claiming that the school discouraged her from reporting an alleged rape.

According to the Detroit Free Press, the federal lawsuit states that in April 2015, the student was a sports journalism major, invited to a party at one of the player’s apartments with the promise of meeting other players. The allegations were that there was no party and that, instead, she was raped by the three players.

A week later, the student went see an on-campus counselor, who discouraged her from taking the matter to the police because it involved well-respected student-athletes.

There are many allegations in this lawsuit such as the University  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” implying to the woman it would not be in her best interest to report the incident to law enforcement.

The woman’s suit also claims she was not advised to have a physical exam, seek medical treatment or have STD or pregnancy tests. It also alleges she was not notified of her federal Title IX rights, protections, and accommodations with hopes of protecting these student-athletes.

Michigan State University is currently under fire for a multitude of sexual crimes against women taking place at their establishment. Just last week, three ex-football players pleaded guilty to reduced charges in the 2017 sexual assault of a woman in an apartment bathroom on campus, the infamous Larry Nassar case, leading to the College of Osteopathic Medicine Dean William Strampel who was charged last month with failing to protect patients from Nassar, along with sexually harassing female students and pressuring them for nude selfies.

Are you looking for digital journalism training and experience? Are you a journalism major who wants to take your career to the next level? CMN’s Digital Journalism course gives you real-time experience, intense feedback on your writing, exposure to journalism influencers and mentors, and a great place to display your work. You can get academic credit too. Check out the Digital Journalism Course here.

Erin Whitten is currently CMN's Senior Correspondent and is currently a student at Arizona State University majoring in Mass Communications and Media Studies.

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