• Lawsuit: UofM did not promptly address rape claim

    By: Jim Spiewak

    Updated:

    MEMPHIS, Tenn. - The University of Memphis did not take rape allegations seriously, and did not promptly address the claims. That’s according to claims made in a new $5 million lawsuit filed by a female student.  

    The woman who was named as a Jane Doe in the lawsuit said she was raped twice by two different male students in a three-week span.  

    The 33-page lawsuit claims the two alleged rapists, Nicholas Wayman and T.J. Tate knew each other.  

    The suit says Wayman raped the victim on April 1st and that the second alleged rape by Tate was in part revenge for her reporting the first one.  

    The victim alleges she filed Title IX complaints and repeatedly tried to get the university to remove the two male students from classes they were both in and other school functions, but the university would not do it.  

    The victim claims the head of the office that is set up for students to report rapes said she should drop out of the classes she shared with Wayman instead of transferring him.  

    Wayman has been indicted for rape and sexual assault by a Shelby County Grand Jury.  

    The suit goes on to say the victim emailed President David Rudd’s office on April 4, 2017, just three days after the first alleged rape.  

    A face-to-face meeting was set up for the next day. The suit claims that meeting was canceled and was not rescheduled by the president’s office until 7 months later, on October 16, 2017.  

    The suit calls that action by the president’s office, “a deliberate indifference to her allegations and allegations in general of severe, persistent, and pervasive sexual harassment.”  

    The suit, which was filed in federal court on Thursday, says “eight months after the initial Title IX complaint against Tate, the university has taken no final action as to Wayman, and Tate remains on campus, having never been subjected to even so much as an interim suspension.”  

    The University of Memphis released the following statement to FOX13: 

    The University of Memphis takes seriously all allegations of sexual assault and has the strongest of commitments to follow nationally accepted and recognized best practices in such cases. While litigation is pending, the UofM will not respond to inquiries.

    Calls to the plaintiff’s attorney’s were not returned. 

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