Former student raped by Baylor football player sues school - KXXV Central Texas News Now

Former student raped by Baylor football player sues school

(Source: MGN) (Source: MGN)

A former Baylor student who says she was sexually assaulted by a Baylor football player has filed a civil lawsuit against the school for negligence and Title IX violations.

Jasmin Hernandez named the Baylor Board of Regents, head football coach Art Briles, and Athletic Director Ian McCaw as defendants in the case.

(Note:  KXXV does not typically name victims of sexual assaults, but Jasmin Hernandez has decided to no longer remain anonymous and is allowing use of her name by the media.)

The suit claims Briles and McCaw failed to properly train and/or educate members of the Baylor football team regarding sexual misconduct; failed to appropriately monitor to ensure student athletes are not brought on campus without regard to other student's safety; failed to implement safeguards for female students; and failed to monitor or supervise Tevin Elliott.

Elliott was convicted of sexual assault in 2014 and sentenced to 20 years in prison.  Hernandez said she was raped by the football player at a party near campus in 2012 despite her protests.

The lawsuit claims she was just one of no less than six female students who said Elliott sexually assaulted them and Baylor knew about those accusations.   Elliott claimed in court any sexual encounters were consensual.  

Hernandez also says Baylor ignored her pleas for mental health and academic counseling after the attack, and did not properly respond to her accusations of sexual harassment, sexual abuse and retaliatory conduct, as well as Title IX policies and procedures.

"I'm sure they will defend themselves vigorously," said Alex Zalkin, one of Hernandez's attorneys from San Diego, California.  "I hope they do so with compassion and they recognize that this is a damaged individual and there are things they could have done to keep the assault from happening," he added.

Hernandez attended Baylor on an academic scholarship in the nursing program until she withdrew after the rape, citing a significant drop in grades because of an ongoing fear of encountering Elliott on campus.

Baylor declined to comment on the lawsuit, citing the student's rights to privacy. 

Hernandez and her attorney were supposed to host a news conference Thursday morning to discuss the lawsuit, but they were unable to attend because of severe weather in Dallas, which affected their flight.

Instead, they released a video statement on the law firm's YouTube page.

In the video, Zalkin says the university failed to help Hernandez on multiple levels.

"Baylor had prior knowledge that Tevin Elliot sexually assaulted multiple women before Jasmin. Despite that, they did nothing to protect Jasmin and other female students on campus from this known sexual predator," Zalkin said.

Hernandez says she's now coming forward because she didn't know she had certain rights under Title IX.

"The school completely neglected my needs and I didn't realize that they were federally required to address these issues differently than they did," she said.

"Internal pressure and student activism is not going to change their policy, then there needs to be some external pressure and that's what she has done by filing this lawsuit," Zalkin explained.   

To read the lawsuit in its entirety, click here.

News Channel 25's Kandace Thomas and Pattrik Simmons contributed to this story. 

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