Saturday, September 23, 2023
Courthouse News Service
Saturday, September 23, 2023 | Back issues
Courthouse News Service Courthouse News Service

Florida State University Settles Rape Claim

(CN) - Florida State University will pay $950,000 to settle a federal Title IX lawsuit filed by the former student who claims she was raped by former FSU quarterback Jameis Winston in 2012.

The university announced the settlement with Erica Kinsman on Monday.

Under the terms of the settlement, the university also committed to five years of sexual assault awareness programs and greater transparency.

."I will always be disappointed that I had to leave the school I dreamed of attending since I was little," Kinsman said in a statement after the settlement was announced.

She added: "I am happy that FSU has committed to continue making changes in order to ensure a safer environment for all students."

FSU did not admit to liability in the settlement. In a statement released by the university, president John Thrasher said the school agreed to in order to avoid additional litigation expenses.

"Although we regret we will never be able to tell our full story in court, it is apparent that a trial many months from now would have left F.S.U. fighting over the past rather than looking toward its very bright future," he said.

"We have decided to instead move forward even though we have full faith that the ultimate outcome of a trial would have been consistent with the previous law enforcement investigations and retired Supreme Court Justice Major Harding's findings in the student conduct hearing," Trasher said.

Kinsman's lawsuit accused Florida State of failing to adequately investigate the incident, in violation of Title IX.

Winston, now quarterback for the NFL's Tampa Bay Buccaneers, has denied the rape accusation, which was not made public until nearly a year after the encounter took place.

Prosecutors in 2013 declined to charge Winston over the alleged incident, and a year later, after a code-of-conduct hearing, the university also decided not to discipline him.

The case, however, is far from over. Kinsman is still suing Winston for sexual battery in federal court, and a U.S. Dept. of Education investigation of the university's actions in regard the case is ongoing.

Winston has also filed a countersuit against Kinsman.

"FSU's choice to settle in no way compromises our commitment to fight for Jameis Winston and to clear the outrageous and false allegations against him," Winston attorney Mayanne Downs said in a statement. "We very much look forward to asking Ms. Kinsman questions while she's sworn to tell the truth."

Categories / Uncategorized

Read the Top 8

Sign up for the Top 8, a roundup of the day's top stories delivered directly to your inbox Monday through Friday.