Title IX suit against Northwestern moves forward with amended complaint

Ciara McCarthy, Managing Editor

The Medill junior who is suing Northwestern for mishandling her complaint of sexual assault filed an amended lawsuit Thursday, which included new details about her experience in the aftermath of the assault and updated information about the factual allegations of the case.

The student claims that since she originally filed the lawsuit on Feb. 10, she has “experienced inconvenience and difficulties at the hands of” the University, including difficulty registering for a journalism class. The amended complaint also includes information about the student’s interactions with the Center for Awareness, Response and Education, which recommends that students suing NU seek advocacy elsewhere.

The student’s suit alleges that philosophy Prof. Peter Ludlow sexually assaulted her in February 2012 and that the University failed to adequately address her subsequent complaint to the Sexual Harassment Prevention Office.

NU responded to the suit on Feb. 21, requesting that the lawsuit be dismissed and asserting that it had properly disciplined Ludlow after a University investigation concluded he had violated the school’s sexual misconduct policy.

At a status hearing in May, Kevin O’Connor, the student’s lawyer, requested the suit be amended to include an additional Title IX complaint from an NU graduate student. The graduate student claims that a professor sexually harassed him and that his Title IX rights were also violated. The judge denied O’Connor’s request because the alleged incident involves a different student and a different professor. O’Connor was instructed to file the graduate student’s complaint as a separate lawsuit, which O’Connor said he will likely file in the coming weeks.

(Graduate student considers filing Title IX suit against Northwestern)

Editor’s Note: Due to incorrect information from the student’s attorney, a previous version of this story indicated the graduate student would be alleging sexual assault. He will allege sexual harassment. The story has been updated.

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