Baylor Looks for Help in Sex Scandal

     WACO, Texas (CN) – Baylor University should hire outside counsel to investigate the sexual assault scandal involving former football player Sam Ukwuachu, school president Ken Starr said.
     Starr announced the completion of an internal investigation Friday evening. Ukwuachu, a 2013 transfer from Boise State University, was convicted by a jury of sexual assault against a former Baylor women’s soccer player on Aug. 21 in McLennan County Court. He was sentenced to 180 days in county jail, 10 years probation and 400 hours of community service.
     Baylor has faced intense criticism over whether head football coach Art Briles and school officials were aware of accusations involving violence against women when the transfer to Baylor was approved.
     One of Ukwuachu’s former girlfriends testified under oath at his trial that he hit and choked her while at Boise State.
     Immediately after Ukwuachu’s conviction, Starr appointed Baylor Law School professor Jeremy Counseller to conduct the internal investigation that resulted in his recommendation for a larger investigation.
     “We must guarantee there is no room at Baylor University for those who would perpetrate sexual violence on our campus. I want to thank Jeremy Counseller, professor of law and faculty athletics representative, for his judgment and guidance,” Starr said in a statement.
     “After reviewing the results of his internal inquiry, I am recommending that our Board of Regents retain the services of outside counsel to investigate thoroughly these matters and recommend continued improvements. The Board plans to announce its selection of outside counsel early next week.”
     Starr said the school would create an officer-level position in the athletics department to oversee “all student-athlete behavior” that will report directly to him to ensure they “maintain the high level of personal ethics and integrity.”
     “I will work directly with the Board of Regents to formulate the specific responsibilities of this position,” Starr said. “Baylor University is committed to maintaining the highest degree of campus safety to protect the welfare of all our students. This is central to Baylor’s mission as a Christian university and at the heart of our commitment to our students, faculty and staff. We must have zero tolerance for sexual violence on our athletic teams and our campus.”
     Title IX attorneys John Clune and Chris Ford, with Hutchinson Black in Denver, announced Friday that they have been hired by the family of the rape victim.
     “At the request of the victim and her parents, our firm has been retained to investigate a number of issues surrounding this case,” Clune said in a statement. “We are glad to see that President Starr and Baylor have chosen to conduct their own investigation and look forward to learning the outcome of that process. Regardless of what facts these investigations may bare, there is a significant teachable moment here for all in higher education and we are hopeful that Baylor University embraces that great opportunity.”
     Starr, a former federal appeals judge for the D.C. Circuit, is best known as the independent counsel who investigated President Bill Clinton during his presidency. His famous Starr Report accused Clinton of lying under oath about an affair with intern Monica Lewinsky, and led to Clinton’s impeachment.

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