Archive for Saturday, July 2, 2005

Judge orders CU to turn over documents in lawsuit

Women suing school claim they were raped by athletes

July 2, 2005


— A federal judge on Friday ordered the University of Colorado to turn over documents it is accused of withholding from two women who filed a lawsuit claiming they were raped by football players or recruits.

In his order, U.S. District Magistrate Judge Craig B. Shaffer said he was "struck by defense counsel's lack of candor" and gave the university two weeks to turn over the documents and argue why it should not be penalized.

The women's attorneys said they were pleased by the ruling.

"We're also pleased that the court is taking seriously the need for sanctioning or disciplining this improper conduct," said attorney Baine Kerr.

Calls to university officials were not immediately returned.

Among the documents ordered released were records from the school's Office of Sexual Harassment allegedly involving an investigation of a November 2001 incident between a female student trainer and football players or recruits at a hotel. The women also were seeking a university police department report about another sexual assault in December 2001.

The women claim they were assaulted at an off-campus party in 2001. Their lawsuit alleged the university violated federal law by fostering an environment that led to the encounters.

In March, U.S. District Judge Robert Blackburn dismissed the women's lawsuit, saying they had failed to prove the school had actual knowledge that football players and recruits sexually harassed female students. The women have asked Blackburn to reconsider his decision.

The women's lawsuits ignited last year's recruiting scandal and prompted several investigations into the school's recruiting tactics.


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