The University of Connecticut and the five current and former students who filed suit against UConn in fall 2013 have reached a mutually agreeable resolution to the litigation over UConn’s handling of sexual assault allegations.
The resolution, announced Friday, was reached to avoid the lengthy and expensive process of litigating the disputed claims at trial.
While UConn categorically denies the lawsuit’s allegations, the University and the plaintiffs said in a joint statement that they want to work toward the future rather than fighting over the past and, accordingly, “have agreed to put to rest their factual disputes, settle the litigation, and move forward.”
UConn and the plaintiffs also reiterated their shared commitment to the same goals: to eliminate sexual and gender-based harassment and violence, to prevent its recurrence, to address its impact on individuals and the UConn community, to make UConn the safest possible campus and, when incidents do occur, to support survivors and hold perpetrators accountable.
A copy of the joint statement, including information on steps that UConn took before and in the time since the litigation was filed, can be found at this link:
Joint Statement issued by UConn and plaintiffs Luby, Angell, Daniels, Richi, and Moccia.
The executed settlement and its terms can be found at this link:
Settlement Agreement & Release between UConn and plaintiffs Luby, Angell, Daniels, Richi, and Moccia.
This information and links to UConn’s sexual violence awareness efforts and other information is also available at www.uconn.edu/resources
UConn officials also released the following statements Friday pertaining to the resolution of the matter:
Statement from UConn Board of Trustees Chairman Larry McHugh:
“The University and the plaintiffs both agreed that settling the case out of court was in all of their best interests. It was clear to all parties that no good would have come from dragging this out for years, as it consumed the time, attention, and resources – both financial and emotional – of everyone involved. In order to do this, compromise was required on both sides, which is reflected in the settlement. I hope this resolution will help the students find closure on this issue.
“Sexual assault is a horrific crime, and we are so sorry that anyone has to go through that experience, especially when they are our own students. We have the utmost compassion for all victims of sexual assault, and above all, it’s important that all our students, their families and the state of Connecticut know that UConn is absolutely committed to fighting sexual violence on its campuses. This is an issue for institutions across the nation, and UConn must be a leader.”
Statement from UConn President Susan Herbst:
“This lawsuit may have been settled, but the issue of sexual assault on college campuses has not been. UConn, like all colleges and universities, must do all it can to prevent sexual violence on our campuses, hold perpetrators accountable, and provide victims with the resources and compassion they desperately need during a time of intense personal trauma.
“Our hearts go out to all victims of sexual violence. The University has taken many positive, important steps in the battle against sexual assault in recent years, which are described in the joint statement, but there is still more to be done.”
Statement from UConn General Counsel Richard Orr:
“The University and the plaintiffs mutually agreed to settle the case at this time because both parties recognized that the legal process would have taken years to conclude, and would have resulted in legal expenses that would far exceed the cost of today’s financial settlement, regardless of the ultimate outcome of a trial.
“All parties agreed that achieving closure on the past and moving forward is more important than battling for vindication in the courts. The settlement will allow the plaintiffs to move on with their lives, and will allow the University to focus on its mission, which includes serving our students the best we possibly can, each and every day.”