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According to a copy of the civil lawsuit that was obtained by USA TODAY Sports, the parents of Katie Meyer, the former Stanford soccer goalkeeper who committed suicide in February at the age of 21, have filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the university.
According to the complaint that was filed on Wednesday in Santa Clara County Superior Court, Meyer was facing disciplinary action at the time of her suicide for allegedly spilling coffee on a Stanford football player in August while she was riding her bike.
According to the complaint, Meyer was a captain on the Stanford women’s soccer team, and the football player is accused of sexually assaulting a minor female soccer player.
Steve Meyer previously stated to USA TODAY Sports that Katie Meyer’s defense of a teammate led to the disciplinary issue.According to the complaint, Stanford “negligently and recklessly” sent her a formal written notice on Feb. 28, the night Meyer died, accusing her of violating the “Fundamental Standard by spilling coffee on another student.”
“Stanford’s night-time disciplinary charge, and the wild nature and way of accommodation to Katie, made Katie experience an intense pressure response that hastily prompted her self destruction,” the objection states. “Katie committed suicide unplanned and in response solely to the shocking and deeply troubling information she received from Stanford while alone in her room without support or resources.”
Notwithstanding improper demise, the claim additionally accuses Stanford of Careless Punishment of Close to home Misery and related activities.
According to Dee Mostofi, the university’s assistant vice president for external communications, Stanford denies being to blame for Meyer’s death but has not received the formal complaint from Meyer’s parents.
“We sympathize with her family for the unimaginable pain that Katie’s passing has caused them,” Mostofi wrote to USA TODAY Sports via email. “The Stanford community continues to grieve Katie’s tragic death.”We strongly disagree, however, with any claim that the university is to blame for her death.”Her status as a Stanford student and, among other things, captain and member of the soccer team that she helped lead to the national championship in 2019 was threatened by the formal disciplinary charge against Meyer, which resulted in the suspension of her diploma three months prior to her scheduled graduation.
According to the complaint, Stanford’s Counseling and Psychiatric Services also closed when Meyer received the letter after 7 p.m.
According to the complaint, “Katie, sitting alone in her dorm room, when it was dark outside, immediately responded to the email expressing how’shocked and distraught’ she was over being charged and threatened with removal from the university.”Katie’s expression of distress was ignored by Stanford, who instead scheduled an email meeting for three days later.Employees at Stanford made absolutely no effort to call Katie or visit her in person to check on her welfare.
According to the complaint, Meyer expressed her despair to Stanford employees in November 2021 when she stated that she was experiencing anxiety during the disciplinary process and had “been scared for months that my clumsiness will ruin my chances of leaving Stanford on a good note.”
According to Stanford spokesperson Mostofi, Meyer received written notice of a potential violation of community standards “several days” before the head of the Office of Community Standards (OCS) contacted him.
“She gave Katie until that date to give any additional data to thought,” Mostofi said. “Katie did not provide any information, and on February 28, OCS informed her that the matter would proceed to a hearing.
Mostofi claims that Meyer was injured in the alleged incident that sparked the disciplinary process.
“As is the practice of the office, it launched a review of that allegation,” Mostofi wrote. “Stanford’s Office of Community Standards received a complaint regarding alleged behavior by Katie that resulted in physical injury.”It was discovered that a high threshold was met for the matter to proceed to a hearing after extensive fact-finding and the opportunity for both sides to provide information.
When asked about the extent of the physical injury, Mostofi did not immediately respond.
Mostofi said that Meyer was “explicitly told that this was not a determination that she did anything wrong, and OCS offered to meet with her to discuss the matter if she wished” in the university correspondence that was sent to her on February 28.Mostofi says that Meyer was also given a phone number to call for immediate help and told that this resource was available to her seven days a week, 24 hours a day.
Mostofi stated, “Katie wrote OCS staff shortly after receiving that email and received a response within the hour.”Katie requested a meeting to discuss the issue, was offered several times to choose from, and despite the availability of an earlier appointment, chose one three days later.
According to the complaint, the football player, who was not named in the lawsuit, said throughout the disciplinary process that he wanted to “make amends” and did not want any punishment that would “impact” Meyer’s life.
According to the lawsuit, Lisa Caldera, Dean of Residential Education, filed the complaint against Meyer with Stanford’s Office of Community Standards. The complaint stated that Meyer was charged on the last day possible.The complaint stipulates that a charge must be filed within six months of the incident, which occurred on August 28, 2021.
Among the defendants are Caldera and Stanford President Marc Tessier-Lavigne.
According to the lawsuit, Stanford was required to remove the football player from the team in accordance with its own policies pledging zero tolerance for sexual violence, but the school did not initiate any meaningful Title IX or OCS disciplinary procedures for the player.
Mostofi also talked about a Stanford football player, but she didn’t say if it was the one accused of disciplinary violations against Meyer.”The claim that Stanford failed to address a claim that a football player kissed one of Katie’s soccer teammates without her permission is inaccurate,” a Stanford spokesperson stated.
“In fact, the university was the first to report this claim to the police and Stanford’s Title IX office.However, the Title IX office did not proceed with the investigation because the requirements for doing so were not met.”Once it receives a copy, Stanford will address any other misrepresentations or inaccuracies found in the filed complaint.”
“We are deeply troubled and disappointed with what we have learned since her passing and have no choice but to move forward with litigation to achieve justice for Katie and protect future students,” Meyer’s parents, Steve and Gina, said in a statement released by their attorney.Through our foundation, Katie’s Save, we are also working to seek systemic changes to enhance the safety and support of Stanford students enrolled now and in the future.