September 2003: Ian McCaw was hired as Baylor University’s new athletic director — replacing Tom Stanton, who resigned a month before — to help Baylor recover from an unprecedented scandal that included the charge of murder against a former player for shooting a teammate, but also the tape-recorded plot of Baylor’s ex-head basketball coach, Dave Bliss, trying to cover-up major NCAA infractions with a story that the murdered player had been a drug dealer.
Nov. 28, 2007: Art Briles was named new Baylor football coach.
2009: Tevin Elliott came to Baylor from Mount Pleasant. The former Baylor football player was sentenced to the maximum 20 years in prison and a $10,000 fine in January 2014 for sexually assaulting a former Baylor student in 2012.
Feb. 15, 2010: Ken Starr was formally named Baylor’s 14th president.
June 1, 2010: Ken Starr took the reins as Baylor’s president, taking over for interim president David Garland.
June 7, 2010: Ken Starr penned a letter in the Tribune-Herald about possible realignment of the Big 12 Conference and, with it, the separation of Baylor from its fellow Texas universities in the Big 12.
May 9, 2011: Robert “Rob” David Cole, a Baylor student, was charged in the sexual assault of a fellow student. Police said Cole assaulted a woman while the two were attending a party in a South Waco apartment in January 2011.
2012: Elliott, the former Baylor defensive end from Mount Pleasant, sexually assaulted former Baylor student Jasmin Hernandez at a party at a Waco apartment complex in 2012. He later was sentenced to 20 years in prison and fined $10,000 in 2014 after his conviction on two counts of sexually assault.
July 2012: Shawn Oakman, a 6-foot-9, 265-pound defensive lineman, transferred from Penn State to Baylor.
Jan. 10, 2013: According to the incident report posted on Twitter by Alex Dunlap of RosterWatch.com, and confirmed by Waco police Sgt. W. Patrick Swanton to media to be authentic, former Baylor defensive end Shawn Oakman physically assaulted a woman.
April, 18, 2013: Former players Tre’Von Armstead and Myke Chatman were named by Waco police in an incident report involving sexual assault, but they were never charged. Armstead was removed from the football program in September 2015, and the university expelled him in February. Chatman transferred to Sam Houston State University.
May 7, 2013: Boise State announced that Sam Ukwuachu was dismissed from the team for an unspecified violation of team policy.
June 2013: Sam Ukwuachu transferred to Baylor after playing at Boise State for two seasons.
September 2013: Baylor President Ken Starr and his wife, Alice, lobbied for a Virginia school administrator who admitted to molesting five children under the age of 14 to be sentenced to community service rather than jail time. Instead, a judge sentenced the man to 43 years in prison for the abuse.
October 2013: Baylor football player Sam Ukwuachu — who was convicted on Aug. 20, 2015 — sexually assaulted a now-former soccer player at the university.
Jan. 23, 2014: Former Baylor football player Tevin Elliott was sentenced to the maximum 20 years in prison and a $10,000 fine on each of two counts of sexually assaulting a former Baylor student in 2012.
June 2014: Sam Ukwuachu was indicted.
November 2014: Patty Crawford became Baylor’s first full-time Title IX coordinator.
Aug. 20, 2015: Sam Ukwuachu, a former freshman All-American at Boise State University before transferring to play football at Baylor, was convicted of sexually assaulting a former Baylor soccer player in 2013.
Aug. 21, 2015: Baylor President Ken Starr issued a statement on “our stance against sexual violence” and tapped Baylor law professor Jeremy Counseller to conduct an internal inquiry into how Baylor handled the allegations against Ukwuachu.
Aug. 28, 2015: Baylor law professor Jeremy Counseller completed an internal inquiry into how Baylor handled the allegations.
Aug. 29, 2015: Waco police responded to a South Waco home, where a former Baylor men’s tennis player was named as the lone suspect in a sexual assault case. The player, who was a member of the tennis team when the alleged incident was reported to police, did not compete in fall 2015 or spring matches in 2016.
Sept. 2, 2015: Baylor hired Pepper Hamilton LLP attorneys Gina Smith and Leslie Gomez to conduct a independent external investigation into how the university handles cases of alleged sexual violence.
Sept. 4, 2015: Shawn Oakman and Orion Stewart, two of the top defensive players on Baylor’s reigning Big 12 Conference championship team, missed the team’s opener against SMU because of violations of team rules.
Sept. 18, 2015: Former Baylor player Tre’Von Armstead was dismissed from the team for an “unspecified team rules violation.” He played in the 2015 season opener against SMU on Sept. 4 and was held out of the second game against Lamar on Sept. 12 for an unspecified reason.
Sept. 30, 2015: A no-contact order is issued by the university's Title IX office for Baylor offensive lineman Rami Hammad after he is accused of sexually assaulting a student in his apartment earlier in the month. The alleged victim said she didn't report the incident to the police, according to ESPN. When an acquaintance told her she had had a similar encounter with Hammad, the two both reported him to Baylor's Title IX office and later filed for no-contact orders.
Oct. 2, 2015: The woman who reported a sexual assault by Rami Hammad was approached by him. He allegedly said " 'You know it was consensual.' " and yelled at her as she got up to leave. According to ESPN, she called Baylor police, who interviewed witnesses to the confrontation. She declined to press charges, saying "I just thought Title IX would take care of it."
Late October 2015: Rami Hammad's judicial affairs trial occurs. When the victim asks later about the trial, a person in the Title IX office said "We can't disclose what happened at the trial to you," according to ESPN. Hammad continued to start for the football team during the semester, playing 13 games for the Baylor football team that fall.
Nov. 12, 2015: After Rami Hammad's judicial affairs hearing, the woman who reported a sexual assault received an email from Baylor Chief Judicial Officer Bethany McCraw, according to ESPN. The email told the woman how she should avoid Hammad by exiting an academic building from a different door. It further instructed her that she should obtain preclearance from McCraw for non-class movements on campus. "I never got a result from the trial, and now I'm being told how to exit the building as if I'm the one who's being charged?" she told ESPN. "I felt like I was being punished and treated like a criminal."
Dec. 31, 2015: The victim in the sexual assault trial of former Baylor football player Sam Ukwuachu is reported to have reached a settlement agreement with the school.
February 2016: Former All-Big 12 tight end Tre’Von Armstead was expelled from Baylor, and his appeal of his expulsion was denied.
Feb. 4, 2016: Stefanie Mundhenk, a 2015 Baylor gradute, posted a lengthy account online alleging that she was raped twice in one night by another student in March 2015. She said university officials, including Ken Starr himself, failed to take action against the accused student and allowed him to work in an office housing her academic program. “Their actions don’t match up to what they said they could provide me with as a victim,” Mundhenk told the Tribune-Herald. Pointing to a lack of urgency from an understaffed team handling the case, she said that “the entity that was supposed to care didn’t, and when that happens you start to believe your story doesn’t matter. I believed it mattered to me because it changed my life.”
Feb. 8, 2016: More than 200 Baylor students, faculty, staff and alumni stood outside the home of President Ken Starr to express their frustration with how the university has handled sexual assault allegations in recent years.
Feb. 9, 2016: The Tribune-Herald requested reports received by the Baylor University Police Department of sexual assaults and other improper sexual conduct during the past 20 years. Per request, the Tribune-Herald agreed to narrow the request by five years, seeking sexual assault reports from Baylor police for the past 15 years.
Feb. 11, 2016: Another Baylor student, junior Cailin Ballard, came forward to share the story of her disappointment with the school’s handling of her sexual assault report, saying she felt blamed by the university’s police department when she reported the October 2013 sexual assault.
Feb. 23, 2016: About 60 people attended a prayer service to support sexual assault survivors at Baylor’s Elliston Chapel. President Ken Starr made a brief appearance beforehand.
March 2, 2016: A former president of Phi Delta Theta fraternity at Baylor, Jacob Anderson, was arrested on a sexual assault charge for allegedly forcing himself on a woman outside of a fraternity party at a house in the 2600 block of South Third Street on Feb. 21, 2016.
March 9, 2016: In the wake of a Baylor fraternity president being charged with sexual assault, the university Greek Life staff sent an email to elected leaders of Greek organizations instructing them not to speak with the media about the situation.
March 29, 2016: The fourth in a four-part prayer service for sexual assault survivors was held at Baylor’s Elliston Chapel.
March 30, 2016: Jasmin Hernandez filed a Title IX lawsuit against Baylor, head football coach Art Briles and Athletics Director Ian McCaw seeking unspecified damages. The former Baylor student twice was sexually assaulted by former Baylor football player Tevin Elliott and alleges school officials knew of previous allegations against Elliott and failed to take proper action to protect other students.
April 13, 2016: Waco police arrested former Baylor football player Shawn Oakman on charges he sexually assaulted a fellow student after leaving a Waco nightclub with her early April 3.
May 11, 2016: Former president of Phi Delta Theta fraternity at Baylor University, Jacob Walter Anderson, was indicted on four counts of sexual assault in an alleged incident in February at a fraternity party.
May 13, 2016: Baylor regents received a “comprehensive briefing from Pepper Hamilton LLP,” the school said in a press release after the meeting. The briefing covered the Philadelphia-based law firm’s findings regarding Baylor’s response to reports of sexual and interpersonal violence. But Baylor officials declined to publicly release the long-awaited report. During the meeting, Baylor officials barred two Tribune-Herald reporters from the building where the regents met — the Baylor Research and Innovation Collaborative, which received public funds for its renovation in recent years, including funds from McLennan County and the cities of Waco and Bellmead.
May 19, 2016: Texas Attorney General ruled Baylor can withhold certain aspects of police reports that involve alleged student privacy issues but must release some information because a new law makes law enforcement records from private universities’ police departments subject to public information laws.
May 24, 2016: An Austin blogger, citing anonymous sources, reported President Ken Starr was fired. Outgoing Baylor board of regents Chairman Richard Willis told the Tribune-Herald that Starr was still president.
According to Baylor regents interviews with the Wall Street Journal, Art Briles met with regents and was asked what he would have done differently, and he began to weep. “He couldn’t speak he was so upset, and all of us were,” said regent J. Cary Gray. “Art said, ‘I delegated down, and I know I shouldn’t have. And I had a system where I was the last to know, and I should have been the first to know.’ ”
May 25, 2016: Ken Starr told the Tribune-Herald that he remained president and chancellor, despite rumors and reports questioning his status. Amid the calls for Starr’s ouster, more than 1,500 people signed an online petition urging Baylor’s board of regents to keep him.
May 26, 2016: Baylor announces sweeping changes in its administration and athletics department, removing Ken Starr from the presidency and firing head football coach Art Briles. Details released from the explosive Pepper Hamilton report on Baylor University’s handling of sexual assault cases says that “Institutional failures at every level of Baylor’s administration impacted the response to individual cases and the Baylor community as a whole.”
June 1, 2016: Ken Starr resigns as chancellor, says he will remain as a professor at Baylor Law School. He says he wants the "full body" of Pepper Hamilton information released and hopes the public will get a clearer picture of how the university has handled sexual assault allegations.
June 2, 2016: The Baylor Line Foundation, other alumni and some sexual assault survivors call for the release of the full findings from Pepper Hamilton. In his first public statement, Art Briles says he is “contractually obligated to remain silent” on what he knew about the program’s handling of sexual assault allegations. He acknowledges that he had made mistakes and “would have done certain things differently.” Meanwhile, Baylor University releases three heavily redacted reports in response to a Tribune-Herald request for 15 years of records and Sam Ukwuachu files an appeal of his sexual assault conviction.
June 3, 2016: Women who say they were raped while attending Baylor University hold a silent demonstration at the Bill Daniel Student Center on Baylor’s campus. “So far, this has been the only chance for victims’ voices to be heard in a safe environment,” says a 2007 Baylor graduate who helped organize the event.
June 6, 2016: Interim president David Garland says in an interview the university is fully focused on implementing the 105 recommendations presented by Pepper Hamilton, saying “I consider them to be mandates that we are going to fix this so this will not happen again. Baylor should be a place that is safe for all students.”
Furthermore, he says the previously released “Findings of Fact” and “Recommendations” are the only materials that will and can be released, noting the board of regents and then-President Ken Starr heard briefings from Pepper in the form of survivor stories. “There is no secret report out there. This is the report, and making it public was incredibly courageous on [the regents'] part,” Garland said. “Frankly, that Pepper Hamilton report, you know, if you took all the case notes and redacted out names, you basically have what we have in the Pepper Hamilton report.”
June 7, 2016: Baylor graduate Dolores Lozano told ESPN reporter Joe Schad she plans to file a Title IX lawsuit against Baylor University, claim assistant football coach Jeff Lebby and former head coach Art Briles did not sufficiently respond to reports made directly to Lebby of violence by a player.
June 8, 2016: Jeremy Faulk and B.J. Autry are reported to have left the football team. Autry voluntarily withdrew while Faulk was released. Baylor officials give no reasons why they are no longer enrolled. An ESPN report said Faulk was questioned about an alleged sexual assault that may have occurred in April on the Baylor campus when he was on the football team.
June 10, 2016: Baylor announces two task forces and 12 implementation teams composed of faculty, staff and administrators to implement the 105 Pepper Hamilton recommendations. Experts say heightened awareness of sexual violence could lead to more reports of the crime at the campus, which is in a transitional phase.
June 11, 2016: Local attorneys tell the Tribune-Herald they fear Baylor may overreact to accusations, placing accused students’ due process rights in jeopardy. At the same time, they acknowledge the difficult task of balancing victims’ wellbeing and interests with the rights of the accused.
June 13, 2016: Baylor regents meet to discuss Art Briles' status, but did not take any action. A small group of boosters was reportedly pushing for Briles’ return.
June 15, 2016: Three women file a Title IX lawsuit against Baylor claiming the school did not properly investigate and respond to sexual assaults. It is the second lawsuit filed. As of this date, Baylor was not under Title IX investigation by the U.S. Department of Education.
June 16, 2016: Art Briles files a motion accusing Baylor lawyers of a conflict of interest and alleging wrongful termination, saying that his firing was a “camouflage” by Baylor to “distract from its own institutional failure to comply” with federal laws regarding sexual assault.
June 17, 2016: Art Briles settles contractual matters with Baylor and withdraws his motion of the previous day. Baylor did not confirm the settlement, but Waco insurance magnate and longtime Baylor regent Clifton Robinson did, saying “the Briles era is over.” Meanwhile, fired athletics staffer Tom Hill says on Facebook that he was “wrongfully fired” and that “Baylor has wrongfully thrown the innocent out in my situation.”
June 20, 2016: A third lawsuit is filed against Baylor, brought by a former student, alleging that the school created a “hunting ground for sexual predators.” Also, attorneys for Jasmin Hernandez tell the media that Art Briles did not attend a mediation session the previous week. “She has been betrayed so many times by him and by Baylor as an institution. This is just another in a long line of betrayal events for her,” one attorney said.
June 22, 2016: The Big 12 Conference calls for Baylor to release documentation of Pepper Hamilton’s investigation. Commissioner Bob Bowlsby says in a statement: “The Big 12 board of directors is gravely and deeply concerned by media reports about activities involving the athletics program at Baylor University.” A spokesman says that if Baylor does not comply with the Big 12’s request, the board would consider taking action against the school.
June 23, 2016: Baylor grants releases to five incoming freshmen on the football team. Assuming they don't return, Baylor will have lost 10 of the 22 players in its 2016 signing class.
June 24, 2016: The university releases a statement saying “Baylor University and Art Briles have mutually agreed to terminate their employment relationship, effective immediately.”
June 28, 2016: Three more women join a lawsuit filed June 15 alleging "deliberate indifference" to investigating sexual assaults and alleging they were deprived of their rights.
June 30, 2016: Interim President David Garland sent a letter to the “Baylor Family” reiterating his view of the recommendations as mandates for the university moving forward. He said the school's counseling staff will double, and that Baylor police will work with the Title IX office to develop consistent protocols. The office will also hire a deputy Title IX coordinator and the head coordinator was developing plan for continuous trauma-informed training, he said. COO Reagan Ramsower says the new task forces are making steady progress, noting a national search for a chief compliance officer is also underway.
The Baylor Board of Regents remains silent about its role in the school’s failure to address sexual assaults, specifically in implementing changes to the board’s governance role and structure that were recommended.
July 6, 2016: Art Briles files a motion to be removed from the federal Title IX lawsuit filed in March, claiming that the plaintiffs had not laid out actionable complaints against Briles, claiming a two-year statute of limitations on the claims and arguing that Briles, as Tevin Elliott's coach, was not liable for negligence in the case.
July 7, 2016: Baylor offensive lineman Rami Hammad is questioned by university police after a Baylor professor called 911 to report that Hammad had waited for his ex-girlfriend before the professor’s class that day, then continued to attempt to contact her. The woman told police she did not wish to pursue charges, according to the university’s campus crime log. The Baylor University Title IX Office also was notified of the incident.
July 9, 2016: A male Baylor student speaks to the Tribune-Herald saying he is a casualty of what he calls Baylor’s overreaching backlash to negative publicity about its failures in responding to and investigating sexual assaults. The student was suspended for 18 months for “nonconsensual sexual contact” with another intoxicated student at a party in March of 2015. The other student did not lodge a complaint against him; the Baylor Title IX did so after he testified as a witness in another case.
Week of July 18, 2016: A former Baylor student and her attorneys file an amendment to the March federal Title IX lawsuit, adding a reference to a 2011 gang rape of another woman by football players. The lawsuit states Baylor had knowledge of the gang rape but “failed to respond promptly and equitably.”
July 21, 2016: Baylor regents chairman Ron Murff makes his first substantive comments to the Tribune-Herald about the school's sexual assault scandal. “There were some things that the administration was not doing,” he said. “We did not implement Title IX properly. We did not have it properly funded.” Murff and interim president David Garland maintained that the university was prohibited by law from releasing a more comprehensive report based on the findings of the Pepper Hamilton law firm. > Read the full interview
July 25, 2016: University officials update the Baylor board of regents on ongoing efforts to bolster its response to sexual violence. Adjustments to the Title IX policy and student-athlete drug testing policy have been made, the report said, and projects focused on Clery Act compliance and a culture and climate survey are underway. Baylor has continued to retain the law firm Pepper Hamilton to help review sexual assault cases between 2011 and 2015 and determine how to provide support, the report revealed. Baylor also purchased case management software to centralize complaints and grievance reports. The athletics department will use the software to report student-athlete misconduct to Crawford and the Student Conduct Administration Office, the report said. Garland also noted a national search for the new position of chief compliance officer was to soon begin.
July 27, 2016: Tom Hill, a former Baylor athletics staffer fired amid the scandal, files a petition seeking all documents and information found in the Pepper Hamilton external investigation, as well as the reasons he was fired. “I want my name cleared of being associated with this ordeal,” Hill said. “I want to know why they fired an innocent man. I want Baylor to be transparent.” Hill said he had no involvement with any Baylor football players accused of sexual assault since 2011.
July 28, 2016: A federal judge declines to sanction plaintiffs' attorneys in one of Baylor's Title IX lawsuits, but reminded lawyers on both sides of the case about their responsibilities under the rules of professional conduct.
July 29, 2016: Jim Marsh of the Baylor University Counseling Center speaks to the Tribune-Herald, noting that the counseling staff will soon reach 20 employees with a 1:800 ratio of counselors to students. In recent years, it was 1:1,660, and in 1999, it was 1:4,500, he said. With a $900,000 expansion of the center, a newly formed Trauma Recovery Team will train counselors, Title IX staffers and Baylor police, he said. He said Baylor had eliminated both charges and limits on the number of counseling sessions it offers. (Students were previously offered 12 counseling sessions per academic year, with seven free and the last five costing $10.)
July 31, 2016: An Associated Press report draws attention to Pepper Hamilton's conclusion that the school's rigid approach to drugs, alcohol and sex and "perceived judgmental responses" to victims who reported being raped "created barriers" to reporting assaults. Some women faced the prospect of their family being notified. Students at Baylor can still be expelled for using drugs or alcohol, though late in 2015 it included amnesty for minor offenses.
Aug. 1, 2016: Baylor offensive lineman Rami Hammad is arrested on a felony stalking charge of his ex-girlfriend and suspended from the football team. A Baylor professor had previously called 911 on July 7, after which he continued to contact the ex-girlfriend, according to an arrest warrant affidavit. The woman told officers Hammad would not leave her alone, including incidents of physical violence between March and July 2016, and that she had taken “extensive measures” to keep Hammad from knowing her whereabouts, including driving a vehicle and subleasing a home Hammad didn’t know about. She told an officer that she feared for his mental health and the effects of her attempts to block contact with him, including ignoring phone calls and text messages and blocking his phone number. She told officers he had spoken about suicide.
Aug. 3, 2016: Baylor Title IX coordinator Patty Crawford speaks to the Tribune-Herald about building her office from scratch and facing challenges fostering cross-campus communication on Title IX. She said Baylor Title IX training sessions, now campuswide, teach students about sexual consent, and she had no push-back from administrators in making the change.
ESPN reports that the McLennan County District Attorney's office has informally asked for "full access" to the information gathered by Pepper Hamilton during their investigation of Baylor University. The office is seeking evidence of criminal conduct by student-athletes, coaches, faculty or staff in connection with sexual assaults at the university, according to the report.
Aug. 5, 2016: Baylor and Art Briles both filed motions to dismiss the March civil rights lawsuit. The filings claim an individual school employee cannot be sued under Title IX and that the statute of limitations has passed for to file suit. Documents also claim a university can’t be held liable for criminal acts perpetrated by students against other students off campus.
Aug. 6, 2016: A Tribune-Herald report examines college head coaches’ responsibilities for their players, which extend past the playing and practice fields. In a sports climate where off-the-field issues are heavily scrutinized, coaches are constantly learning about program priorities. Interim Baylor football coach Jim Grobe has said all potential Title IX violations involving players now go straight to the Title IX coordinator. From there, Baylor’s policy decisions involving athletics suspensions have not been finalized, athletics spokesman Nick Joos said in an email.
Aug. 18, 2016: On Baylor move-in day for freshmen, students and parents say they're excited for Baylor’s next chapter. Many said they are proud of the changes made in the Title IX Office, counseling center and more and said it did not affect their college decisions. “It doesn’t make me feel any differently about Baylor,” freshman Kayla Joslin, of Bellville, said of the scandal. “Everybody makes their mistakes, and I think we handled it the way that we should have, so I support Baylor 100 percent.”
Aug. 19, 2016: Ken Starr announces he is leaving his post at Baylor Law School, cutting his last tie with the university. “Frankly, the university determined that it wanted a break in the employment relationship, so I’ve accepted that decision and will, of course, honor the decision,” Starr said in an interview. “Nothing changes my love and respect for Baylor.”
Aug. 23, 2016: Baylor announces a newly launched page on its website that tracks progress made on 105 recommendations from the Pepper Hamilton law firm. It notes the addition of a 24-hour crisis hotline and a website for reporting Title IX violations and other student conduct concerns, according to a press release.
Aug. 27, 2016: Baylor supporters bought a school-record 28,804 public season tickets for the 2016 season, the school announced. The deadline to renew season tickets had passed before May 26, the day the board of regents released the Pepper Hamilton findings and fired Art Briles and demoted Ken Starr, according to the AP. A spokesman said approximately 25 season ticket holders canceled their orders.
Sept. 2, 2016: Baylor opens the football season with a 55-7 home win over Northwestern State. It was a breath of fresh air for many fans after the tumultuous offseason, with thousands flocking to McLane Stadium hours before the game. Baylor players felt nothing but love and support on the Bear Walk into the stadium.
Week ending Sept. 3, 2016: Baylor files motions seeking dismissals of Title IX lawsuits filed by six former students, saying the plaintiffs have failed to state a claim and that the statute of limitations bars the suit.
Sept. 7, 2016: Former Baylor University athletics staffer Tom Hill, who publicly questioned his firing amid the school’s sexual assault scandal, files to dismiss a request for the reasons he was fired and for all documents and information related to an external investigation of the university. When Hill made his original request for information on his firing, Dunn said the information would have wide public benefit.
Sept. 8, 2016: Baylor regents announce a 12-member committee to start a national search for the university’s 15th president. The committee will work with an outside search firm to set priorities for candidates, with an aim to have someone in place by June 1, 2017.
The same day, Baylor holds a forum titled “Sexual Violence & Aggression on College Campuses,” attended by about 30 students, which notes that church communities have been apt to downplay sexual abuse, contributing to the persistence of age-old mindsets that lead to gender discrimination.
Sept. 9, 2016: Ken Starr says he will assist with Waco High School’s mock trial classes during the fall semester.
Sept. 10, 2016: In an interview airing in full hours before Baylor's second football game of the season, former Baylor coach Art Briles tells ESPN's College GameDay that he is remorseful and says he takes responsibility for the football program’s poor handling of sexual assault allegations involving players in a scandal that cost him his job. “There were some bad things that happened under my watch,” Briles said. “And for that, I’m sorry. I was wrong. I’m going to learn. I’m going to get better.”
Sept. 16, 2016: Shawn Oakman, a former Baylor football player under indictment for sexual assault, made an uninvited appearance in the team locker room following the Bears' 38-10 win over Rice in Houston. “Baylor did not invite Shawn Oakman onto the field or into the locker room,” a university statement said. “Oakman spoke personally with a few former teammates and left the stadium. Oakman is not permitted in Baylor-owned facilities nor in the locker room at future away games.”
Also at the game, Rice's marching band used its halftime performance to mock the Baylor sexual assault scandal. The band formed the Roman numeral IX, a reference to Title IX, followed by a star and a rendition of the song "Hit the Road Jack," in reference to the departure of Ken Starr.
Sept. 19, 2016: At his press conference, Baylor coach Jim Grobe said “I don’t know who Shawn Oakman is. ... I wouldn’t be able to recognize him if he walked into the door right now.” Clarifying that comment the next day, he noted that “Had I recognized him, the situation would have been handled differently. But regardless of that, my comment that I don’t know him was taken out of context. And the way it was portrayed by some in the media, in my opinion, was unprofessional and unfair.”
Sept. 20, 2016: Attorneys for former Baylor student Jasmin Hernandez file motions to remove Art Briles and Ian McCaw as defendants in a lawsuit filed against them and the university. They say they will file a separate but related suit against Briles and McCaw as individuals.
Sept. 21, 2016: Baylor board of regents chairman Ron Murff says there were no communication failures in recent years between athletics personnel and regents, but the board has recently created an executive committee and eliminated its athletics committee. Faculty senators questioned Murff and his predecessor on relationships between the two groups, according to newly released faculty senate meeting minutes. “Coaches were contacting board members, and they got to be friends,” a former faculty regent said. “That’s one of the problems. You have to have some clear lines of demarcation of what’s acceptable and what’s not acceptable.”
Faculty senate minutes also revealed Baylor regents rebuffed repeated requests in 2016 from faculty leaders for information from Pepper Hamilton’s investigation. The minutes also revealed faculty concerns regarding board transparency, justification for the firings and the faculty’s role in selecting the next president.
Sept. 24, 2016: Ken Starr, speaking at the Texas Tribune Festival, pushed back against the notion that Baylor — or its athletic department — has systemic problems handling sexual assault investigations, and called for release of more details of the independent investigation that concluded otherwise. Starr also offered full-throated support for Art Briles, suggesting that Briles did not deserve to be fired and was the victim of inaccurate news reporting.
Sept. 26, 2016: New Baylor athletic director Mack Rhoades speaks in depth to the Tribune-Herald, saying university Title IX efforts are “absolutely” moving in the right direction. “Everybody in this athletic department, I don’t care who you are, has a responsibility to Title IX and making sure we do what we can, and everything we can to prevent it,” he said. All student-athlete misconduct is reported directly to the university, Rhoades said.
Sept. 30, 2016: Baylor police chief Brad Witgil tells the Tribune-Herald that he has emphasized trauma-informed responses when interacting with victims of violent crime, plus mandating officer training and updating certain policies.
Oct. 3, 2016: Two women claiming they were sexually assaulted while attending Baylor joined a Title IX lawsuit against the school, bringing its total to eight plaintiffs. The lawsuit was originally filed June 15.
Oct. 4, 2016: Baylor Title IX coordinator Patty Crawford resigns, with the university saying “our understanding is that Patty was disappointed in her role in implementing the recommendations that resulted from the Pepper Hamilton investigation.” Commenting about a mediation session, Baylor said Crawford's “demand for 1 million dollars was surprising and her request to retain book and movie rights was troubling, and we can’t explain her motivation.” Crawford's attorney said that by making those comments, Baylor may be "breaking the law."
Oct. 5, 2016: In an interview on national television, Patty Crawford says that the school “set (her) up to fail” when she began the job in November 2014. Crawford also said upper-level administrators interfered with her ability to do her job, noting that “the harder I worked, the more resistance I received from senior leadership.” Kristan Tucker, who was senior deputy Title IX coordinator, was named Crawford’s replacement.
Baylor files a motion to divide one Title IX lawsuit with multiple plaintiffs into six separate suits, saying their circumstances differed greatly.
Suspended lineman Rami Hammad is arrested on a criminal trespassing charge on the Baylor campus. He had been suspended from the football team on Aug. 2 and also suspended from the university, pending the results of the investigation.
Oct. 6. 2016: Patty Crawford writes a Facebook post about the “cowardly and dishonest mentality of the millionaires running Baylor,” saying that “They’re escalating discrimination, retaliation, trying to buy my integrity and now bullying their way through the media,” Crawford wrote.
It was reported that Jeremy Faulk, who was released from the team in June, had won an appeal against the university in July but had not been reinstated due to a Title IX investigation.
Oct. 7 2016: Doug Welch is named Baylor's chief compliance officer, a new position created based on the Pepper Hamilton recommendation to better implement Title IX. Welch had been Baylor’s associate general counsel since 2006. Welch was previously named in a motion by Art Briles, since withdrawn, that alleged Welch was assigned to represent Briles and Ian McCaw in a lawsuit and then used information obtained from Briles “in support of Baylor University’s termination of Coach Briles from his job as Head Football Coach on May 26, 2016.”
Oct. 10, 2016: Baylor files a motion to dismiss the third Title IX lawsuit against the school, filed in June. The plaintiff — who claims Baylor did not adequately respond to her report of sexual assault — has not stated a viable Title IX claim, nor did she state an arguable negligence theory, attorneys say.
Oct. 11, 2016: Jessica Armstrong, a 1990 Baylor graduate, bought an RV and adorned it with signs reading, “We back Briles” and “Restore or resign,” aimed at Baylor regents. She then drove through and around campus for two hours, bringing on honks and cheers, she said. But Baylor police ended the tour and asked her to leave campus.
Oct. 12, 2016: Dolores Lozano files a Title IX suit against Baylor alleging that she was physically assaulted at least three times by former Baylor football player Devin Chafin. It's the fourth Title IX suit filed, totalling at least 10 plaintiffs.
Also, attorneys for former Baylor student Jasmin Hernandez file an amended complaint to re-add Briles and McCaw to her lawsuit filed in March. The two were previously removed from the suit. Hernandez alleges that “they had a duty to control Tevin Elliott, to competently run their football program and athletic department and to essentially protect female students, including Jasmin, from known sexual predators.”
Oct. 14, 2016: Several Baylor University regents stress transparency as they leave their quarterly meeting. However, they offer no specifics on how the board intends to increase transparency or when more information on the sexual assault scandal that has rocked the university could be released. Chairman Ron Murff says “We are going to continue to look for ways that we can provide more information within the common decency and all the parameters that you and I have discussed before. We’re going to continue to look for that and see if there’s a way we can do that and provide some more information that would be helpful to the whole (Baylor) family.” The school later emailed a press release noting the board’s “commitment to rebuild trust with the Baylor family, the community and the public.”
Oct. 17, 2016: Baylor officials, including interim president David Garland, athletic director Mack Rhoades and the school's general counsel, addressed the Big 12 board of directors for about half an hour. Big 12 Commissioner Bob Bowlsby wouldn't get into details about what was said in the private session. But he said the Baylor trio responded to questions, and "it was good."
Oct. 19, 2016: The U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights confirms it has launched a Title IX investigation of Baylor University on Tuesday in response to a complaint former Title IX Coordinator Patty Crawford filed with the office. Baylor’s case is one of 281 Office for Civil Rights investigations active at 215 colleges and universities. Such investigations usually take about two years, according to experts. The DOE is also mum on specifics during investigations.
Oct. 28, 2016: In interviews with the Wall Street Journal, Baylor regents say that the school's sexual assault scandal involved 17 women who reported sexual or domestic assaults involving 19 football players between 2011 and 2015, included four alleged gang rapes. They said that former head football coach Art Briles, in a meeting two days before his firing, began to weep and said, “I delegated down, and I know I shouldn’t have. And I had a system where I was the last to know, and I should have been the first to know.” Briles’ lawyer says that Baylor appears to be violating a nondisparagement clause that was part of a June agreement. Briles never discouraged victims from filing claims against players, and regents are holding Briles responsible for Baylor’s failure to implement Title IX initiatives, he said.
Also, two more women, identified as Jane Doe, join a Title IX lawsuit against Baylor, alleging their lives were turned upside down after they were sexually assaulted as students. The women are the ninth and 10th plaintiffs to be included in the action, initially filed in June.
Oct. 29, 2016: Ken Starr releases a chapter of his upcoming book, “Bear Country,” to the Tribune-Herald. (Read the chapter here.) It chronicles mounting tension between him and Baylor’s board of regents over his six-year tenure. Starr wrote the board had been working in the three years before his firing to shift his role from chief executive to a nonexecutive fundraiser.
Oct. 31, 2016: The Baylor Line Foundation, formerly known as the Baylor Alumni Association, questioned the decision of Baylor regents to speak publicly to the Wall Street Journal about the sexual assault scandal. It called the coverage “part of a carefully orchestrated public relations campaign.” The group also said “This appears to be a change in philosophy from Interim President David Garland’s promise that the university was committed to ‘protecting any details that may compromise the privacy’ of the survivors and the innocent,” noting it had previously called for a full accounting of unanswered questions surrounding the scandal while still protecting privacy.
Nov. 1, 2016: In an interview with "60 Minutes Sports," former Baylor Title IX Coordinator Patty Crawford says that hundreds of students approached her with complaints of sexual assault in her less than two years in the role, and repeated her claim that she never had the authority, resources or independence to do her job. Interim President David Garland, Chief Operating Officer Reagan Ramsower and four Baylor regents — Chairman Ron Murff, Kim Stevens, Dennis Wiles and Neal Jeffrey — spoke to the program. “We have a Christian mission. One of the ways we honor that mission and honor the Lord is by taking care of people. And we didn’t do that. We failed at that, and we didn’t do the right thing,” said Jeffrey. > Read more
In response, a Baylor spokesperson said Crawford received three salary increases, workspace expansion and a growing Title IX budget ($1.179 million in FY 2016) — including a $12,000 officewide, three-day spa retreat funded by the university. Emails obtained by the Tribune-Herald also show that, in the last year, Crawford praised and thanked many Baylor officials, including a regent, human resources staff, Garland and Ramsower, for their support. She also voiced her problems with the Baylor’s implementation teams, alleging she was left out of meetings and decisions that may have concerned the work of her office. > Read more
Nov. 2, 2016: Patty Crawford and her attorney release email threads and texts to the Tribune-Herald showing that Crawford felt excluded from Title IX discussions and was low in Baylor’s chain of reporting for alleged violence. The attorney also noted that “Their claim that Patty is seeking or wanted book and movie rights is a flat-out lie.” Crawford said she does not want to engage in mud-throwing and hopes Baylor devotes the proper resources to helping sexual assault victims.
Crawford also told ESPN that former Baylor AD Ian McCaw "asked if I could give immunity to the football players that still were at the university" and disputed several recent statements by Baylor, including her Title IX department budget, her performance reviews and the circumstances around the departure of a Title IX investigator.
Nov. 4, 2016: On the eve of its football game against TCU, Baylor assistant coaches tweeted their support of former coach Art Briles in which they said he acted properly in his handling of a sexual assault case. The mass tweet was in response to a Baylor Board of Regents’ member telling a newspaper that Briles did not report the alleged sexual assault.
Nov. 5, 2016: At the game against TCU at McLane Stadium, some fans wore black T-shirts that read #CAB in support of Art Briles. Sold by a vendor outside the stadium, the T-shirts were a hot item. One fan hung a black banner from his McLane Stadium suite that read CAB. The Bears suffered an embarrassing loss to the Horned Frogs, 62-22.
Nov. 8, 2016: The Wall street Journal reports that the NCAA has notified Baylor that it won’t exert its executive authority to impose sweeping sanctions for broad institutional failings in the wake of the university’s sexual assault scandal. However, the newspaper reported that Baylor still faces a more narrow NCAA probe, and the investigation will likely focus on whether Baylor athletes received preferential treatment through the school’s disciplinary process.
Nov. 10, 2016: A group of major Baylor University donors demands transparency from the school’s embattled regents, saying the board is tone-deaf to its constituents and some members likely need to be removed. The group, dubbed “Bears for Leadership Reform,” includes John Eddie Williams, a Baylor alumnus and Houston lawyer whose name adorns Baylor’s football field and law school library, major donor and Regent Emeritus Drayton McLane, former football coach Grant Teaff, former Texas Gov. Mark White, former board Chairman Gale Galloway, former Regent and former Baylor Alumni Association President Emily Tinsley and a host of others. About 650 people attended a meeting held in Waco.
Nov. 11, 2016: A Dallas Morning News report says that Baylor "has revealed details of how it says former football coach Art Briles and others in the school's athletic department handled allegations of a 2012 gang rape involving five players." The information released by the university is in response to the tweets sent Nov. 4 by Baylor University football coaches, which claim the assault was in fact reported to Judicial Affairs. Baylor says records show no report was ever made. Briles' attorney said "As usual everything Baylor is saying is false," adding, "They're up to the same underhanded and dirty tricks."
Nov. 15, 2016: Baylor’s board of regents will publicize agendas and minutes for all future quarterly meetings, Chairman Ron Murff says.
Nov. 19, 2016: Baylor alumni groups continue to push for more transparency from the board of regents in the wake of the board’s decision to release agendas and minutes. At the same time, higher education experts say the step to publish agendas and minutes already goes beyond what most private universities do. When asked about open or partially-open meetings, board Chairman Ron Murff called it “difficult,” citing common best practices among private universities.
Nov. 22, 2016: Baylor University reaches an undisclosed financial settlement with two women who reported being gang-raped by football players in 2012. The women did not file lawsuits, and one of the women also reported being physically assaulted by a football player in 2013. The players implicated in the report and the athletics employees who heard the report in 2013 are no longer part of the university, interim President David Garland said in a joint statement with the women’s attorneys.
Nov. 28, 2016: Former Baylor athletic director Ian McCaw is hired by Liberty University.
Dec. 1, 2016: Baylor regents say the board is evaluating whether to release more information from a nine-month review of the school’s handling of sexual assault allegations during the past several years. Regents also say Baylor is in “good shape” financially, which faculty and staff leaders repeated after multiple meetings with the regents.
Dec. 5, 2016: Bears for Leadership Reform calls for an investigation of the conduct of the school’s board of regents and administration after an almost 2½-hour meeting between three Baylor regents and four members of the group. Houston lawyer John Eddie Williams, a prominent member of the reform group, said he expects Baylor to pay for this independent investigation, and said he would also contribute to a third-party probe potentially costing more than $1 million. He hopes investigators could be hired within the month.
Dec. 6, 2016: Baylor University received a one-year warning from its regional accrediting agency, the Chronicle of Higher Education reported. The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges will monitor Baylor’s compliance based on three standards, interim President David Garland said — student support services, control of intercollegiate athletics and institutional environment. Baylor remains accredited and expects to show full compliance for SACSCOC’s review this time next year, he said.
Dec. 8, 2016: A new head football coach, Matt Rhule of Temple University, is introduced to the Baylor community. In interviews with reporters, Rhule said he is familiar with self-reporting, Clery Act responsibilities and other aspects of campus safety. Rhule played football at Penn State University, where a child sex abuse scandal unfolded. Rhule said he wants to make sure his players understand they need to be disciplined off the field and that some actions are unacceptable. “Each situation is different to me, and so I think there’s some non-negotiable things that you can’t do,” Rhule said. “You can’t hurt women. You can’t hurt people who are less fortunate than you. You can’t bully other people. You know that was kind of the way I handled it at Temple. I’ll handle it the same way.”
Also Thursday, the Associated Press reports that former Baylor head coach Art Briles is alleging libel, slander and conspiracy against three Baylor regents and a senior administrator through a lawsuit against board chairman Ron Murff, regents J. Cary Gray and David Harper and Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Reagan Ramsower in a Llano County district court.
Dec. 11, 2016: Baylor regents vote unanimously against another investigation into the school’s sexual assault scandal after calls from influential Baylor donors. The board agreed on the thoroughness and fairness of Pepper Hamilton’s nine-month investigation. A special committee of regents, appointed in October, reviewed the “methodology, scope of work and findings” of the investigation.
Dec. 13, 2016: Bears for Leadership Reform, a group of notable Baylor donors, says the scandal could cost the school at least $223 million, according to a financial analysis commissioned by the group. It says Baylor has spent or will spend almost $33 million in legal, consulting and public relations costs, $30 million in fines and sanctions and more than $24 million in settlements with employees. Other costs of investigations, victim settlements, hiring new employees and Title IX compliance bring the total to $121.7 million. Also projected is $101.3 million in lost private contributions through 2019.
Also Tuesday, Tom Hill, an athletics employee who was fired amid the scandal, sues the Pepper Hamilton law firm. Hill claims the attorneys did not obtain pertinent facts, interviews with important witnesses, nor did they perform their duties objectively and accuses partners Gina Maisto Smith and Leslie M. Gomez of negligence and defamation.
Dec. 22, 2016: The Wall Street Journal reports that then-Baylor President Ken Starr granted a reprieve for Tevin Elliot in 2011 when the athlete was accused of academic misconduct. The newspaper notes the information is "deep" in the transcript of Elliott's 2014 trial.
Jan. 5, 2017: It's reported that Buddy Jones, former regents chairman, was recently added as a defendant in fired Baylor associate athletics director Tom Hill's lawsuit. Jones is accused of influencing current regents’ personnel decisions amid the school’s sexual assault scandal.
Jan. 8, 2017: As Baylor looks to have several Title IX lawsuits dismissed, plaintiffs’ lawyers continue to seek more details of the nine-month investigation centered on the school’s response to sexual assault allegations.
Jan. 12, 2017: Baylor regents and administrators say all statements made by Art Briles in a lawsuit against them are false, according to a court filing.
Jan. 16, 2017: The Dallas Morning News reports that Baylor is seeing its second-highest number of early applicants in school history despite the scandal.
Jan. 18, 2017: The “Bears for Leadership Reform” group demands open meetings, press availability and a dramatically restructured board in a teleconference with media. In response, regents chairman Ron Murff said the board will soon adopt more than 30 recommendations given by the board’s Governance Review Task Force.
Jan. 19, 2017: Former Baylor Title IX staffer Gabrielle Lyons tells ESPN that she faced discrimination and intimidation while investigating sexual assault cases involving football players. She said she has made a Title IX complaint to the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights and echoes claims made by former Title IX coordinator Patty Crawford.
Jan. 21, 2017: Baylor regents announce they will vote in February on bylaw amendments meant to rebuild trust. The proposals include new voting privileges for regents representing specific groups, an expanded website with information on the board and a rigorous selection process for regents. Not included were measures to open board meetings to the public. The amendments are based on a 30-page report (PDF) by a governance review task force.
Jan. 25, 2017: A former Baylor University financial aid staffer files a Title IX lawsuit against the school, alleging she was retaliated against and ultimately fired for reinstating the scholarship of a football player previously and wrongfully accused of sexual assault.
Jan. 27, 2017: A Baylor graduate files a Title IX lawsuit against the school, alleging a culture of sexual violence that included 52 rapes in four years. The woman said she was raped by former football players Tre’Von Armstead and Myke Chatman. The suit alleges coaching staff members, including Kendal Briles, encouraged a culture of sexual violence by arranging for women to have sex with recruits on official campus visits.
Also Friday, former Baylor regents chairman Neal T. "Buddy" Jones denied all allegations made in a lawsuit filed against him by fired athletics staffer Tom Hill; and Shawn Oakman made a brief pretrial appearance in a Waco court where his trial date was pushed back to April.
Jan. 31, 2017: Fired Baylor athletics staffer Colin Shillinglaw accuses Baylor officials and the Pepper Hamilton law firm of libel and slander in a new lawsuit. The suit says the attorneys made defamatory statements to Baylor’s board of regents in a May presentation and disputes statements made by regents to the media. Shillinglaw came to Baylor in 2008 from Art Briles' University of Houston staff.
Feb. 1, 2017: Without a settlement, Art Briles dropped his libel lawsuit against three Baylor regents and a senior vice president, a lawyer for the the regents said. "He just decided to dismiss his lawsuit and everybody walked away," said the attorney.
Feb. 2, 2017: In an answer to fired staffer Colin Shillinglaw's lawsuit, regents say that he, Art Briles and other Baylor athletics officials department repeatedly attempted to keep players accused of crimes out of the public eye and the university’s judicial system. The filing calls the football program “a black hole into which reports of misconduct such as drug use, physical assault, domestic violence, brandishing of guns, indecent exposure and academic fraud disappeared.” (PDF: Read the filing)
Feb. 3, 2017: Liberty University, the new employer of former Baylor AD Ian McCaw, defended him in two statements thated point to Baylor’s lack of Title IX and disciplinary policies and procedures while McCaw was running the athletics department. The statements included quotes from Baylor regent Jay Allison and former head football coach Grant Teaff in support of McCaw, as well as transcripts of two emails unnamed Baylor regents sent to Liberty President Jerry Falwell Jr. after McCaw was hired in November.
Feb. 7, 2017: More than a dozen former Baylor regents penned an open letter to the sitting board raising concerns with how it has handled the school’s sexual assault scandal. The letter focuses on concerns with an investigation into institutional responses to sexual violence, specific recommendations for board improvements and a warning label from the school’s accrediting agency.
Also, Baylor regents chairman Ron Murff declined an opportunity to address prominent donors and concerned alumni at a town hall meeting hosted by the Baylor Line Foundation. The Bears for Leadership Reform group formally accepted the invitation the previous week. Murff said he is unsure if other regents or administrators will attend.
Feb. 8, 2017: The Big 12 board of directors voted unanimously to withhold 25 percent of future revenue distribution payments to Baylor, pending the outcome of a third-party verification review of required changes to Baylor’s athletics procedures and to institutional governance of its athletics programs. Baylor’s remaining quarterly share that could be withheld is about $5.5 million, according to an athletics department official.
Feb. 11, 2017: The Trib reports that Baylor saw a bump in early application numbers as of the early admissions deadline of Nov. 1 with 14,331 received, an increase of more than 2,000 from last year, a spokeswoman said.
Feb. 13, 2017: Baylor regents launch a website that includes biographies, committees and their members, governance documents, a board email address and the upcoming meeting’s agenda.
Feb. 15, 2017: About 150 people attend a town hall meeting in Waco hosted by the Baylor Line Foundation. Supporters and alumni urged the school’s board of regents to make sweeping governance changes that go beyond reforms regents will consider Friday. Five of the board's 34 regents attended the meeting.
Feb. 16, 2017: The Baylor Line Foundation asks the board of regents to delay its Friday vote adopting governance reforms.
Feb. 17, 2017: At its regularly scheduled quarterly meeting, Baylor regents approved a set of bylaw amendments meant to boost board transparency and community trust. The measures grant voting rights to regents from the Baylor Bear Foundation and “B” Association. The board will also now have two faculty regents, instead of one, and both will be voting members. Board Chairman Ron Murff and interim President David Garland also took questions from media.
Feb. 2017: Attorneys Gina Maisto Smith and Leslie M. Gomez leave the Pepper Hamilton law firm to lead a practice group devoted to institutional response to sexual violence issues at the law firm Cozen O’Connor. Baylor says it has regularly worked with Smith the pair and that work will continue.
Feb. 21, 2017: Baylor graduate and state Sen. Kirk Watson, D-Austin, announces legislation to make it easier for college students to report sexual violence. His five bills would require universities to provide an anonymous online reporting process; would prohibit administrators from punishing sexual assault victims or witnesses who reveal that they were drinking underage; and would establish “affirmative consent” as the standard for Texas campuses. “These bills aren’t all about Baylor," Watson said. We need to change the culture on all campuses.” State Rep. Terry Canales, D-Edinburg, has also filed a "Baylor bill" related to sexual assault protocol on college campuses.
Feb. 22, 2017: The Tribune-Herald reports a former Baylor men’s basketball manager was arrested on two misdemeanor charges of harassment after he repeatedly contacted two women he did not know and sent them sexually explicit social media messages, according to affidavits filed in the case.
Feb. 23, 2017: Prominent Baylor donors known as Bears for Leadership Reform criticized Baylor’s decision to hire more attorneys to represent the university and demanded that regents disclose legal fees associated with the new firms. The group notes that one attorney is paid hourly fees of $1,100 or more.
Feb. 24, 2017: State Rep. Roland Gutierrez, D-San Antonio, files a resolution calling for the Texas Rangers to investigate the sexual assault scandal at Baylor, saying the level of cover-up is appalling. There is “widespread evidence of obstruction of justice” that needs to be investigated, the resolution says.
Feb. 25, 2017: After a Baylor women's basketball game, head coach Kim Mulkey spoke to the crowd and voiced her displeasure about negative coverage of the allegations against Baylor and its football program. "If someone's around you and they ever say, 'I will never send my daughter to Baylor.' You knock them right in the face. Because these kids are on this campus. I work here. My daughter went to school here and it's the damn best school in America." Mulkey was apparently responding to recent comments by ESPN commentator Stephen A. Smith. She later apologized for those comments.
Feb. 27, 2017: Four Texas lawmakers took aim at Baylor at a press conference calling for the Texas Rangers to investigate the school’s senior administrators and police department. They accused officials of not complying with the Texas Public Information Act and of withholding responsibility from senior officials. One said he would consider threatening to withhold tuition equalization grants from Baylor.
Also, Hillsboro pastor and student at Baylor’s Truett Theological Seminary was arrested, accused of sexually assaulting a child after a mother allegedly caught him with her daughter in a car.
Feb. 28, 2017: It's reported that Baylor defensive back Travon Blanchard was suspended from the football program before a protective order was issued against him earlier in the month. The order cites allegations of ongoing domestic violence against a woman. A Waco law firm identified her as an ex-girlfriend, cautioning against a rush to judgment.
March 1, 2017: Waco’s 10th Court of Appeals heard oral arguments from former Baylor football player Sam Ukwuachu, who argued he deserves a new trial because prosecutors abused the grand jury process to intimidate a defense witness and used improperly admitted extraneous offenses to convict him.
Also, former football coach Art Briles released a statement defending his reputation. “Let me be clear,” Briles wrote. “I did not cover up sexual violence. I had no contact with anyone that claimed to be a victim of sexual or domestic assault. ... I did not obstruct justice on campus or off.”
March 2, 2017: Asked again about her controversial postgame comments and the criticism she has received, an emotional Kim Mulkey further clarified her comments.
Federal investigators from the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights met with Baylor faculty, staff and students as it continues to determine if the school has violated Title IX.
March 7, 2017: A federal judge rules that 10 women who allege they were sexually assaulted at Baylor can pursue claims that university officials created a heightened risk of sexual assault by the way they responded to the reports. In a 27-page ruling, he also threw out some claims and barred others claims because of statute of limitations violations.
Also, Baylor announces Wes Yeary, a nine-year employee who is the director of sports ministry, will leave the school. In August 2015, Yeary testified in defense of former football player Sam Ukwuachu, who was later convicted of sexual assault.
Also, an attorney for suspended Baylor football player Travon Blanchard said that discrepancies in statements his ex-girlfriend gave to police and the DA's office call her credibility into question.
March 8, 2017: In a wide-ranging interview, former Baylor President Ken Starr said he thinks former head football coach Art Briles is “an honorable man,” while also saying a need remains for full transparency regarding the school’s damaging sexual assault scandal. Read the full interview here.
March 11, 2017: A bill under consideration by the Texas Senate Committee on Higher Education would force Baylor and other private universities receiving state tuition equalization grants to hold board meetings open to the public.
March 13, 2017: Former Baylor football player Tre’Von Armstead was arrested by Las Vegas police after allegedly physically assaulting a woman at a hotel. Armstead had been expelled from Baylor after he and former running back Myke Chatman were named in a 2013 police report alleging their participation in an off-campus sexual assault. No charges were filed and Baylor did not open an investigation until September 2015.
March 22, 2017: Former Baylor Tre’Von Armstead was arrested on three second-degree felony sexual assault charges stemming from an alleged 2013 sexual assault while he was a member of the Baylor football team. It is unclear whether indictment is related to the incident that led to a previously reported 2013 police report against him and Myke Chatman.
March 23, 2017: Former Baylor football player Shamycheal “Myke” Chatman was arrested on sexual assault charges stemming from the same 2013 incident former Baylor football player Tre’Von Armstead was indicted in, a courthouse source told the Tribune-Herald.
March 28, 2017: Baylor files a reponse moving to dismiss the lawsuit of an alleged rape victim who claimed the school’s football program had “the most widespread culture of sexual violence and abuse of women ever in a collegiate athletic program.” She says she is the victim of an alleged 2013 gang rape committed by then-football players Tre’Von Armstead and Shamycheal “Myke” Chatman, who were arrested the previous week.
March 29, 2017: A Texas Senate committee lambasted Baylor and interim president David Garland, who testified before the panel, over the sexual assault scandal and pondered taking the dramatic step of requiring the private university to comply with state open records laws. Garland had come to testify against a bill requiring schoolsto comply with state open records and open meetings laws.
April 5, 2017: Lawmakers have reacted to the Baylor scandal by proposing several bills that would require school employees and student leaders to immediately relay reports of assaults to the school's investigations office or face possible criminal charges or expulsion, bar schools from using student conduct code violations to intimidate victims and witnesses, and make it easier to report assaults anonymously and online. Another bill would bar registered sex offenders from living on college campuses.
April 6, 2017: The Bears for Leadership Reform group urges Baylor regents to support a Texas Senate bill requiring open meetings, saying “backroom deliberation (and) decision-making” by several regents has been harmful. Leader John Eddie Williams also says that Baylor has hired lobbyists to kill the bill.
April 6, 2017: Former Baylor football staffer Colin Shillinglaw dropped his lawsuit against the university and key officials Thursday and will work to solve his dispute through arbitration, according to his lawyer. Shillinglaw had accused the university and officials of libel, slander and conspiracy.
April 7, 2017: A federal ruling in a Title IX case means the lawsuit will move forward against Baylor, Art Briles and Ian McCaw. The ruling allows claims that Baylor’s actions created a heightened risk for students, while dismissing claims on Baylor's mishandling of the plaintiff's complaint. Negligence claims will also move forward, while claims of intentional infliction of emotional distress were dismissed.
April 18, 2017: Baylor names Linda A. Livingstone, dean of the George Washington University School of Business, as the university’s 15th president effective June 1. Livingstone is the first female president in Baylor’s 172-year history, Regents chairman Ron Murff said the board's vote was unanimous. An Oklahoma State University graduate, Livingstone was formerly an associate dean at Baylor's Hankamer School of Business and a management professor. She later was dean of the Graziadio School of Business and Management at Pepperdine University.
April 21, 2017: In a 47-page legal filing, Baylor described the claims of 10 alleged sexual assault victims as vague, uninformed or untrue. It has maintained in similar filings that it has no legal duty to protect students from harm from fellow students. The lawsuit is proceeding on claims the university created a heightened risk of sexual harassment or assault.
April 24, 2017: In a legal filing, former Baylor coach Art Briles said he was unaware that six female Baylor students had independently told a university judicial officer they had been sexually assaulted by Tevin Elliott, who played under Briles from 2009 to 2012. Briles also denied details of the lawsuit, including allegations that he received phone calls from a rape victim’s parents in 2012 and that he and the university did not properly respond.
Former Briles assistant coach Cris Dishman is offering a seminar to college and high school coaches in an effort to help them take leadership roles in sexual assault awareness. Dishman has attempted to find a coaching job but has had no success following the scandal.
April 26, 2017: In an interview, new president Linda Livingstone said Baylor will go beyond state and federal laws and guidelines to ensure student safety. She said universities should work together reviewing best practices in responding to reports of sexual violence, and plans to listen to Baylor’s constituent groups to identify the key questions and concerns, consider how best to address the issues and recognize the proper mechanism to do so.
April 28, 2017: Former Baylor athletic director Ian McCaw denies in a court filing that he failed to properly respond to sexual assault allegations against athletes, saying he promptly notified former coach Art Briles as soon as he was notified of sexual assault allegations against former defensive end Tevin Elliott.
In the Texas Legislature, a bill affecting taxpayer-funded tuition equalization grants is amended to solely affect Baylor, which accepts $10.4 million in TEGs. A previous version would have impacted one other school. “The reason this was done in the first place is to address things at Baylor,” said state Sen. Kel Seliger, the bill’s author. The committee has approved the bill.
May 2, 2017: Another federal investigation is set to begin into Baylor, this one focusing on the school’s annual compiling of crimes reported on campus. The Department of Education will review the Clery Act crime statistics Baylor is required to publish every year. Baylor’s most-recent report lists 23 reported rapes in 2015, up from six in 2014. The school listed five reported forcible sexual offenses in 2013, two in 2012 and none between 2009 and 2011.
Also, Southeastern University, an NAIA school in Lakeland, Fla., hires former Baylor football assistants Jeff Lebby and Randy Clements. Both spent nine years at Baylor under Art Briles. Clements had coached with Briles at Stephenville High School. Lebby is Briles' son-in-law.
May 5, 2017: In a legal filing, Baylor argues a Title IX claim is based on 2011 federal guidance that does not have “the force and effect of law,” and that a negligence claim fails because, under Texas law, “universities do not owe a legal duty to protect students from harm from fellow students that occurs at off-campus events not affiliated with the university.”
May 12, 2017: Baylor regents say at their quarterly meeting that the university has fully implemented the 105 recommendations given to them after its internal sexual assault investigation. The board also elected elected a new chairman, Joel Allison, the former president and CEO of Baylor Scott & White Health, who will take over from Ron Murff June 1.
May 16, 2017: Baylor is served with a seventh Title IX lawsuit, which alleges as many as eight football players drugged a student and took turns raping her in 2012. The plaintiff remembers hearing the players yell, “Grab her phone! Delete my numbers and texts!” following the rape in an off-campus apartment. The suit alleges the football team had a system of hazing freshman recruits by having them bring freshman females to parties to be drugged and gang-raped, which was considered a bonding experience by the players. The plaintiff says that at least one 21-second videotape of two Baylor students being gang-raped by football players had circulated. According to a university statement, the school has been in conversation with the alleged victim for “many months,” attempting to reach a resolution.
May 19, 2017: Responding to a scathing op-ed by Texas Rep. Roland Guiterrez in which he wrote that Baylor regents serving since 2010 should resign, Baylor pushed back, with board Chairman Ron Murff inviting Gutierrez and his daughters to campus, saying that he worried the lawmaker "may be influenced by second-hand information provided by people with agendas."
May 23, 2017: Baylor resolves its lawsuit with former financial aid staffer Lyn Wheeler Kinyon, filed in January. She had claimed she faced retaliation for reinstating the scholarship of football player Jeremy Faulk. Faulk was dismissed in 2016 four days after regents fired Ken Starr as president and Art Briles as head football coach.
May 24, 2017: A former Baylor student was indicted on an attempted sexual assault charge stemming from an April 2016 incident in a Baylor residence hall. He was arrested in May 2016. His attorney says he was suspended from Baylor after a Title IX process.
May 25, 2017: Documents filed in a Title IX lawsuit suggest Baylor and the Pepper Hamilton law firm, in anticipation of litigation, revised their legal relationship to conceal the investigation’s most damning findings. Plaintiffs argue Baylor's selective release of information should cancel any attorney-client privilege.
Also, Baylor critic State Rep. Roland Gutierrez said he would “tentatively accept” an invitation to tour Baylor on the condition of a “a formal, public meeting” with the board of regents.
May 26, 2017
Mounting lawsuits, criticism from alumni and influential donors. Baylor-inspired state legislation and criticism from legislators, external investigations and the resignation of a Title IX coordinator have followed. > Read more
May 28, 2017: The Texas Legislature approves requiring Texas public and private universities to create anonymous online reporting tools for sexual assault victims.
May 31, 2017: David Garland spends his last day as Baylor's interim president telling a Waco attorney he does not know why the school was investigated for its responses to sexual violence, nor was he curious to learn, according to a deposition given in a Title IX lawsuit against. An attorney for the plaintiffs calls Garland “willfully ignorant.”
Also, former Baylor athletics administrator Tom Hill's lawsuit is dismissed. Hill claimed to be a victim of negligence, defamation and conspiracy by the Pepper Hamilton law firm, and also accused former regents chair Neal “Buddy” Jones of wrongful and intentional conduct by influencing current regents’ decision to remove him.
Also, attorneys for former Baylor football player Shawn Oakman file a motion to withdraw from his sexual assault case three months before he is set to stand trial. The judge says they withdrew because Oakman has not paid them.
June 1, 2017: New Baylor president Linda Livingstone spends her first official day on the job at the Big 12 spring meetings in Irving updating the league on Title IX reforms. Of Baylor's $34.8 million share of revenue, the conference will hold about $6 million in escrow pending verification of changes at the school.
Also, a new chairman of Baylor's board of regents takes the helm. Joel Allison, a former leading hospital administrator of Baylor Scott & White Health and a regent since 2012, takes over as the board has faced heavy criticism over its handling of the sexual assault scandal with ongoing litigation and investigations.
June 7, 2017: Baylor responds to a May 25 filing regarding Pepper Hamilton's attorney-client privilege with the university, calling it groundless. “I always understood that all communications . . . were to be protected by the attorney-client privilege because Baylor had retained Pepper Hamilton to provide legal services and render legal advice,” a regent swore in an affidavit.
June 10, 2017: Fired athletics staff Colin Shillinglaw files a lawsuit against Baylor alleging libel, slander and breach of contract, with the goal of arbitration. A previous Dallas County suit against Baylor officials denied arbitration, ordering Shillinglaw to pay more than $325,000 in fees and court costs, which he is appealing. Shillinglaw alleges he never received a complaint regarding job performance or conduct and says he has been rejected for jobs since his firing.
June 12, 2017: After a year on the job, Baylor announces Executive Vice President and Provost L. Gregory Jones is stepping down effective June 30. Jones held a key role within the university’s response to the school’s sexual assault scandal, leading a task force focused on spiritual life and character formation. Education school dean Michael McLendon is later named interim provost.
June 23, 2017: A “comprehensive overview” spreadsheet abstracting information behind every alleged sexual assault reported to Baylor since 2003 will be released by the school, pending a court decision, according to a brief filed by Baylor attorneys.
June 26, 2017: Baylor acknowledges an "ongoing, pending investigation" from the NCAA in a federal court filing while asking a judge to protect the school's communications with the NCAA from attorneys in its Title IX lawsuits.
June 27, 2017: Baylor responds to a May 2017 lawsuit, its seventh, saying the complaint attempts “to use inflammatory allegations and speculation about sexual assaults of other women, unrelated in time or place to her own alleged sexual assault, to bolster her claims and unfairly prejudice Baylor.” Baylor also moves to strike most of the plaintiff’s allegations, including the claim that football recruits were lured to the program by female student hostesses expected to have sex with them.
July 1, 2017: In a court filing, 2009 emails show then-Baylor University Regent Neal “Buddy” Jones referred to female students he suspected of drinking alcohol as “perverted little tarts,” “very bad apples,” “insidious and inbred” and “the vilest and most despicable of girls” in communications with a faculty adviser. Ten alleged sexual assault victims suing Baylor attached the emails to show a culture “using the alcohol policy as a pretext to shame, silence and threaten to expel a female student.”
July 6, 2017: Baylor reaches an undisclosed settlement with a woman who claimed Baylor was “a hunting ground for sexual predators.” She alleged she was drugged at an off-campus party at “the rugby house,” abducted and raped on Feb. 28, 2015. After settlement, five more suits are still pending against Baylor.
July 7, 2017: A Waco judge throws out former athletics staffer Colin Shillinglaw's second defamation and breach of contract lawsuit. Baylor's attorney argued that the lawsuit was largely a “cut-and-paste job” of a previous suit filed in Dallas County, calling it “a second bite at the apple.”
July 17, 2017: A Texas Tribune piece notes that Baylor and many other universities in Texas don’t list disciplinary violations on student transcripts, allowing students to transfer freely after accusations. Schools say that disciplinary proceedings aren’t criminal cases — and that a transcript should be viewed as an academic file, not a disciplinary record. Several schools include notations when an investigation is final, but not when it's pending. Some administrators and victims’ rights advocates worry that failing to provide notice on a transcript — either of a final or pending investigation — creates an escape hatch for students transferring to avoid punishment. Baylor is currently reviewing whether it should change its policy, the Tribune reports.
July 18, 2017: Prosecutors decline to pursue charges against a former Baylor basketball manager who was arrested in February on allegations he harassed two women with sexually explicit social media messages. Prosecutors wrote that “successful prosecution is unlikely.” No additional explanation was given. The manager was dismissed in January, a month before he was arrested by Baylor police.
Also, suspended Baylor University football player Travon Blanchard is arrested on a Fort Bend County assault warrant, five months after authorities started investigating domestic violence allegations against the senior defensive back. A woman filed for a protective order after reporting a Feb. 4 assault.
July 19, 2017: Former Baylor player Rami Hammad has completed Title IX requirements and is free to re-enroll while he seeks to resolve two misdemeanor charges against him (reduced from felony stalking), his attorney said at a brief court appearance. The attorney said at least three schools have contacted Hammad about playing football, but they won’t accept him until the cases are finalized. He said Hammad is reluctant to plead guilty or to acknowledge wrongdoing of any kind.
July 21, 2017: Baylor's board of regents holds its first meeting under a new governing structure. Baylor’s legal team updated regents on investigations surrounding the university’s Title IX failures in recent years. Board chair Joel Allison says “We talked about the fact that we’re going to be the best at compliance. We should be the most compliant.”
July 26, 2017: U.S. District Court Judge Robert Pitman delivers a substantial ruling against Baylor, ordering the school to produce original documents, not summaries of sexual violence and harassment reports from all Baylor students since 2003. Baylor previously offered to release general information about the reports. Pitman also ruled the settlement agreement between Baylor and former President Ken Starr is to be included in discovery, but it will not be public. Settlement agreements with former head football coach Art Briles, former Athletics Director Ian McCaw and former athletics staffer Tom Hill are irrelevant to the case, he said. Pitman also ruled Baylor does not have to release its communications with the NCAA, the Big 12 Conference and the Texas Rangers — all of which are investigating the scandal. He also noted that a controversial 2009 email from of then-regent Neal “Buddy” Jones “may be relevant to Plaintiffs’ claims.”
On the same day, according to a filing in a separate lawsuit, Baylor President Ken Starr became aware of a domestic violence allegation against then-football player Devin Chafin — yet did nothing to rectify the matter even after a personal meeting with Chafin, The suit does not allege how Starr learned of the incident. Plaintiff Dolores Lozano, who agreed to be named publicly, also claims Associate Athletics Director Nancy Post “completely disregarded” a 2014 report from Lozano's acrobatics and tumbling coach, LaPrise Harris-Williams. Harris-Williams turned to then-Director of Sports Ministry Wes Yeary, who met with Lozano and provided her literature “to assist in her spiritual self-worth and preservation,” yet did not report Lozano’s allegations elsewhere, she alleges. Lozano claims Harris-Williams’ resignation one year later was related to her “vehement requests” to Post, who did not take action. While her bruises and abrasions were visible, Lozano said, she first told Chafin’s position coach, Jeff Lebby, about Chafin's assault. Lozano alleges Lebby said he would speak to Chafin and no further action was taken. Yeary left the university earlier in 2017. Lebby, Art Briles' son-in-law, stayed on Baylor's football staff for one year under interim head coach Jim Grobe and now coaches in Florida. Post continues to hold the same position at Baylor.
July 28, 2017: The attorney for 10 former female Baylor students in a Title IX lawsuit said it appears Baylor is withholding information requested by the defense, including a warrantless arrest affidavit. He said he gained access to certain documents through other means and noticed that materials Baylor produced had pages missing. At a meeting with the parties, the judge said if the plaintiffs’ claims that the university is withholding information are true, he would have “grave concerns.”
Aug. 2, 2017: The Tribune-Herald reports that Dallas police investigated Sam Ukwuachu after The Dallas Morning News complained the former Baylor football player sent numerous potentially harassing emails to the newspaper over the past several months. Police recently suspended the investigation, citing insufficient evidence for a harassment charge. Ukwuachu has also sent more than a dozen emails to Trib reporters about his case and resulting media coverage.
Aug. 5, 2017: In a Q&A with the Tribune-Herald, Title IX expert Peter Lake talks “Compliance U” and how universities across the nation are struggling to keep up with a more regulated environment — what he calls “the new normal” in higher education. Lake was in Waco to conduct training sessions at McLennan Community College.
Aug. 7, 2017: By mid-September, cameras will surround Baylor’s main campus to improve the quality and speed of criminal investigations, the school’s top safety official says. Video footage will not be monitored live but reviewed to assist in Baylor and Waco police investigations.
Aug. 11, 2017: A landmark ruling by U.S. District Judge Robert Pitman requires Baylor to produce interview recordings, notes, summaries and evidence from the secretive Pepper Hamilton investigation. The judge says Baylor waived attorney-client privilege in May 2016 when its released a 13-page “findings of fact” document, as well as when three Baylor regents filed legal documents alleging the football program covered up crimes also waived privilege. It remains unclear how much of the information will be made public before or during the trial, tentatively scheduled for October 2018.
Aug. 15, 2017: Jasmin Hernandez settles with Baylor in a a Title IX lawsuit filed last year. Asked if Hernandez received settlement money, her attorney said, “I can’t talk about the terms of the agreement, but I’ll let you guess.” Hernandez, who agreed to be named in news coverage, was raped by former football player Tevin Elliott in 2012. Elliott is serving a 20-year prison sentence. She also requestd to remove Art Briles and former Ian McCaw as defendants. Briles’ attorney said in dropping the suit, Hernandez did not request money or an apology from Briles, who feels “a measure of vindication.” He expects Briles to coach again in 2018.
Aug. 16, 2017: Former Baylor footballl player Rami Hammad pleads guilty to misdemeanor assault-family violence and receives deferred probation for two years and a $200 fine. He was originally charged with third-degree felony stalking and misdemeanor criminal trespass.
Aug. 17, 2017: It's announced that longtime Baylor administrator Tommye Lou Davis will soon leave the school’s executive council and return to a faculty position. Davis was chief of staff to the president twice previously. Davis was the recipient of emails from former regent Neal "Buddy" Jones in 2009 in which Jones called Baylor students under her faculty sponsorship “perverted little tarts” and “the vilest and most despicable of girls.” A federal judge later ruled the exchange “may be relevant” to proving Baylor violated Title IX. Davis also angered alumni as a central figure in efforts to snuff out the Baylor Alumni Association.
Also, a credit ratings provider says Baylor has a strong short- and long-term debt rating. The report notes operating results for fiscal year 2016 were down 2.3 percent from the previous year because of one-time costs related to staff termination and higher legal expenses.
Aug. 18, 2017: Attorneys for Baylor and 10 former students with Title IX lawsuits pending against the school file a joint order proposing a complex road map to guide the release of materials reviewed by Pepper Hamilton in its investigation. The lawyers report they have reached agreements on many of the discovery issues, but said the judge will have to settle other matters. Baylor says the electronic information reviewed by Pepper Hamilton amounts to about 450,000 documents, plus about 90,000 text messages “and a yet unknown number of tangible materials.” The search is expected to take about two months.
Aug. 21, 2017: Another Title IX lawsuit is filed against Baylor regarding an alleged April 2017 incident comes after Baylor's assurances that it has fully implemented 105 recommendations meant to improve the university’s response to sexual violence. It's the eighth such lawsuit filed against Baylor and the fifth active case. The victim says she was assaulted by a fellow student and says she faced questions from university officials that tilted blame away from the perpetrator.
Aug. 22, 2017: A new book by two ESPN reporters on the Baylor scandal includes interviews with McLennan County Assistant District Attorney Hilary LaBorde; Karla Leeper, former chief of staff to two Baylor presidents; and several women alleging they were sexually assaulted while attending Baylor. Regents J. Cary Gray, David Harper, Kim Stevens and Ron Murff also spoke with the authors. The book also contains details from several key legal filings related to the scandal. The book also alleges student-athletes did not undergo random drug tests before 2016.
Aug. 23, 2017: It's announced Reagan Ramsower, a longtime senior Baylor administrator who has been the target of criticism during the scandal, will resign as senior vice president and chief operating officer in May 2018 and return to teaching. Former Title IX coordinator Patty Crawford accused Ramsower of denying her resources and independence to do her job. Continuing a high-level Baylor shakeup under new president Linda Livingstone, Baylor VP for operations Brian Nicholson will also leave his position at the end of 2017. L. Gregory Jones and Tommye Lou Davis previously left their senior posts.
Aug. 28, 2017: Former Baylor Title IX staffer Gabrielle Lyons sues the school, alleging university officials retaliated against her while she investigated reports of sexual violence. She demands $750,000 in lost wages, mental anguish and other costs. She resigned in 2015 after working with Title IX Coordinator Patty Crawford, whose claims of discrimination and retaliation she echoed. Earlier in 2017, Lyons filed a Title IX complaint through the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights.
Also, in a whirlwind day for Art Briles, as the the Hamilton Tiger-Cats of the Canadian Football League decide not to hire him after announcing earlier in the day that he was joining the coaching staff as an assistant. After the announcement, public backlash forced Tiger-Cats management to backtrack on the decision.
Aug. 31, 2017: Former Baylor acrobatics and tumbling coach LaPrise Harris-Williams says she will file a Title IX lawsuit against the school after a pre-lawsuit mediation meeting in which “Baylor University is not taking us seriously,” her attorney said. Her attorney said 40 women have told Harris-Williams about a culture of sexual violence at Baylor, and at least a dozen others told her about personal experiences of sexual assault. Nine lawsuits have been filed so far.
Sept. 1, 2017: Bayor is hit with another lawsuit from three former students alleging their educational opportunities were denied due to inadequate responses to sexual violence they experienced. It's the 10th Title IX lawsuit filed against Baylor. One plaintiff claims she was gang raped in April 2016 by two football players at student housing owned by Baylor. The other plaintiffs in this lawsuit allege they were assaulted by fellow Baylor students in March 2016 and April 2012, respectively. The first was told a police investigation would last five years, she claims, and it would likely derail her academic plans. The other said Baylor’s counseling center did not inform her of her rights under Title IX, nor could it take appointments with her due to the number of students already with appointments.
Also, a letter released to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram by the Canadian Football League shows Baylor supporting Art Briles, standing in stark contrast to a previous legal filing by Baylor regents that painted the former coach in a negative light regarding his potential involvement in the sexual assault scandal. The letter says that Baylor is unaware of Briles having direct contact with anyone reporting a sexual assault to him or of Briles directly discouraging a victim from reporting to police or university officials.
Sept. 5, 2017: Baylor settles another Title IX lawsuit by an alleged victim of gang rape by then-football players Tre’Von Armstead and Myke Chatman in April 2013 after an off-campus party. Both are awaiting trial in the incident. ESPN previously reported that Baylor waited at least a year and a half to investigate. The pair were arrested and indicted in March 2017. It's the fourth lawsuit Baylor has resolved related to the scandal, and the school still faces six active Title IX lawsuits.
Sept. 7, 2017: Competing motions between Baylor and 10 alleged sexual assault victims offer a glimpse into officials’ strategies for responding to media inquiries amid the sexual assault scandal. In the ongoing discovery dispute, the university argues portions of certain emails are protected by attorney-client privilege due to their connections to Title IX procedures, sexual assault cases involving students and other topics requiring legal advice.
Sept. 8, 2017: At day 100 of her presidency, new Baylor chief Linda Livingstone has gone on record with faculty to say the school remains financially secure despite the scandal that has led to a flurry of lawsuits and investigations. She has also said she hopes the Big 12 Conference will approve of the improvements to sexual violence response made over the past year.
Sept. 13, 2017: The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals agrees to review the state’s appeal of a lower court ruling that reversed the sexual assault conviction of former Baylor University football player Sam Ukwuachu. Waco’s 10th Court of Appeals ruled in March that a series of text messages between the victim and her friend sent shortly before the incident were improperly excluded from evidence at Ukwuachu’s trial.
Sept. 16, 2017: Baylor asks the city to ban short-term rentals in multifamily complexes near campus. The university says the boom in online vacation stays raises safety concerns for off-campus student housing, nothing federal laws such as the Clery Act and Title IX place responsibility on the school for ensuring student safety even in off-campus housing. The city Plan Commission was skeptical at its meeting.
Sept. 20, 2017: Then-Baylor University interim President David Garland cited Scripture while writing that “some women may seem willingly to make themselves victims” of sexual assault in a June 2016 email to a senior administrator, according to documents filed in a Title IX lawsuit against the university. He then cited verses in the New Testament book of Romans that refer to God’s wrath on those who commit sexual sin. Garland also wrote that his predecessor, Ken Starr, was rightly criticized “for his blatantly obvious self-serving attempt to protect himself and his reputation” in the days after his firing.
Sept. 22, 2017: The Trump administration scraps Obama-era guidance on campus sexual assault investigations, stemming from 2011 and 2014 "Dear Colleague" letters, replacing it temporarily with instructions that allow universities to use a "clear and convincing" evidence standard instead of a lower "preponderance of the evidence" rule mandated under the previous guidance. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos has said that Obama's policy had been unfairly skewed against those accused of assault. Advocates says the new rule will discourage reporting of sexual assault and make college campuses less safe.
Sept. 28, 2017: A federal judge grants Baylor’s motion to dismiss Title IX claims, negligence and gross negligence claims in plaintiff Dolores Lozano’s case, while amending her suit to add claims for negligent hiring, retention and supervision. He says the Title IX claims fall outside the two-year statue of limitations and that Baylor had no duty to protect her from former boyfriend Devin Chafin’s violent acts.
Also, Baylor responds to the previous week's filing about an email written by former interim President David Garland regarding the role of alcohol in sexual assault cases, saying it was misrepresented by the opposing counsel. “Dr. Garland’s email did not state any sexual assault victim was ‘at fault’ or that any such victim was assaulted ‘due to some use of alcohol for purposes of adventure,’ ” Baylor wrote.
Oct. 2, 2017: Eleven on-campus rapes were reported at Baylor University in 2016, according to new federal crime statistics reported by universities. It's a decrease of 23 from 2015.
Keep up with the latest developments at wacotrib.com/news/higher_education.