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Calling Alleged Rape Victim’s Lawsuit ‘Frivolous,’ U. of Oregon Seeks Dismissal

The University of Oregon has answered a lawsuit by a student who said she had been sexually assaulted by three basketball players with a document calling it “frivolous” and “unreasonable,” The Oregonian reports. In the document, dated earlier this month, the university and its basketball coach, Dana Altman, ask that the complaint be dismissed and that their legal fees be paid, among other things.

The lawsuit against the university and the coach was filed in January by a female student identified as “Jane Doe” after months of controversy surrounding the alleged rape. The student makes a host of claims in the lawsuit, including that Mr. Altman acted with “deliberate indifference” when he recruited one of the accused players even though he had been expelled from another college after an incident of sexual assault.

The counterclaim, which responds to the woman’s allegations point by point, states that the lawsuit represents a threat to other victims of sexual assault: “In this case plaintiff’s counsel’s actions threaten to harm not only Oregon and Altman but also all sexual-assault survivors in Oregon’s campus community. Here, the publication of false allegations about Oregon’s handling of a report of an alleged sexual assault creates a very real risk that survivors will wrongly be discouraged from reporting sexual assaults and sexual harassment to Oregon, in direct contravention of the goals of both Title IX and Oregon.”

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